The Incomparable

32: The Story of Ted Chiang and Others


00:00:00   the impound horrible comcast number 32 [TS]

00:00:13   welcome back to be uncomfortable podcast [TS]

00:00:15   i am doing smell your host i am joined [TS]

00:00:17   today by our usual book club rogues [TS]

00:00:20   gallery if you ignore the last book club [TS]

00:00:23   podcast which I wasn't on and in fact [TS]

00:00:25   only listened to yesterday but let's [TS]

00:00:28   ignore that because i had more in on it [TS]

00:00:30   and therefore it doesn't count [TS]

00:00:31   so our usual our usual book club rogues [TS]

00:00:33   gallery Glenn Fleischman joins us hello [TS]

00:00:35   Glenn hi thanks for having me thanks for [TS]

00:00:38   reading the book as always [TS]

00:00:39   Scott McNulty also quite literally [TS]

00:00:41   gentleman who has read the book [TS]

00:00:42   yes yes you have read the book I concur [TS]

00:00:47   alright thank you for confirming and [TS]

00:00:48   joining us yet another person who is [TS]

00:00:51   capable of reading things and speaking [TS]

00:00:53   about them you wouldn't think this would [TS]

00:00:55   be rare with our group and yet [TS]

00:00:57   thank you too Lisa Schmeisser who joins [TS]

00:00:59   us again today I learned how to read for [TS]

00:01:02   this podcast that's right reading will [TS]

00:01:04   get you far and you know why because [TS]

00:01:06   reading is fundamental [TS]

00:01:08   take a look at it in a book a Reading [TS]

00:01:11   Rainbow mhm so our subject today on the [TS]

00:01:15   book club is actually short stories and [TS]

00:01:18   in particular we're going to look at a [TS]

00:01:19   short story collection along with some [TS]

00:01:21   loose assorted short stories by AI [TS]

00:01:24   believe seattle-based author is that [TS]

00:01:26   right Glenn that is my understanding i [TS]

00:01:28   know people who know him a guy named ted [TS]

00:01:30   chang who doesn't ted chang doesn't have [TS]

00:01:33   a massive output of writing he seems to [TS]

00:01:38   be a slow writer a methodical writer but [TS]

00:01:41   he released just a few years ago a short [TS]

00:01:43   story collection called stories of your [TS]

00:01:45   life and others and it was recommended [TS]

00:01:48   to be by Greg NOS our good friend and [TS]

00:01:50   member of the podcast you decided not to [TS]

00:01:52   show up tonight even though he [TS]

00:01:53   recommended the book to me [TS]

00:01:54   thanks Greg but teaching has been has [TS]

00:01:59   been critically acclaimed he's won the [TS]

00:02:02   award has been nominated for lots of [TS]

00:02:03   awards in the hole in the science [TS]

00:02:05   fiction writing community and he's a [TS]

00:02:08   good writer so I thought we would we [TS]

00:02:10   would talk a little bit about these [TS]

00:02:12   books if you haven't [TS]

00:02:13   error that the short stories if you [TS]

00:02:14   haven't read them I I doubt we're gonna [TS]

00:02:16   get some deep down into the spoilers but [TS]

00:02:18   if so will fire off the spoiler horn but [TS]

00:02:21   with so many short stories it's really [TS]

00:02:23   not about the big magic nations of plot [TS]

00:02:26   like it is with novels it's a lot about [TS]

00:02:27   just a sort of taking that that journey [TS]

00:02:30   and and and getting a little nugget of [TS]

00:02:32   the story so so anyway Ted Chang I think [TS]

00:02:36   we've all read some or all of the stuff [TS]

00:02:39   that he's written not sure how to [TS]

00:02:40   approach this guy i don't really want to [TS]

00:02:42   go down a bulleted list of of every [TS]

00:02:44   single short story he's written although [TS]

00:02:46   we could maybe start by talking about a [TS]

00:02:48   particular story that you found [TS]

00:02:51   interesting in some way and I'm gonna [TS]

00:02:52   throw to glen because he's in seattle [TS]

00:02:54   he's got the home court advantage [TS]

00:02:56   we should talk we can talk about themes [TS]

00:02:58   after we talked about stories i think [TS]

00:02:59   it's a lot of things run through this [TS]

00:03:00   but I think story of my story of your [TS]

00:03:03   life is to me it's one of the best [TS]

00:03:06   pieces that story in this collection is [TS]

00:03:08   one of the best pieces of writing that [TS]

00:03:11   I've read ever have to say because it he [TS]

00:03:14   does something that I have the same [TS]

00:03:16   feeling when i read certain you know [TS]

00:03:18   terrifically cerebral science-fiction [TS]

00:03:23   authors like I'm looking I'm looking [TS]

00:03:24   across the room at the massive anthem [TS]

00:03:27   which has its own bookshelf for instance [TS]

00:03:29   the extensions and FM i think it's i [TS]

00:03:31   think it takes up a quarter of the space [TS]

00:03:32   of my living room to hold it and and [TS]

00:03:36   when i read an mi felt like oh it was [TS]

00:03:38   painful to read initially because he was [TS]

00:03:40   rewriting my brain as i wrote as i read [TS]

00:03:42   it and i felt too much smaller extent [TS]

00:03:45   story of your life requires that you as [TS]

00:03:49   you read it you are a dealing with the [TS]

00:03:52   different tenses that the first person [TS]

00:03:54   author whose up the professor is [TS]

00:03:57   professor of linguistics opposes maybe [TS]

00:03:59   that the best way to describe her and [TS]

00:04:02   she she's talking about the future as [TS]

00:04:06   the present and the past sort of as the [TS]

00:04:09   past and it's confusing where she's at [TS]

00:04:12   and she seems to be talking to an infant [TS]

00:04:14   and as a story involves she's moving [TS]

00:04:17   backwards and forwards through time and [TS]

00:04:19   you think always this one of these time [TS]

00:04:21   travel stories you get precognitive [TS]

00:04:23   powers and what it turns out to be is so [TS]

00:04:26   like most mundane and remarkable at the [TS]

00:04:29   same time that it's I find it kind of [TS]

00:04:31   mind-blowing like I've never read a [TS]

00:04:33   concept in science fiction [TS]

00:04:34   that's so beautifully encompass the [TS]

00:04:36   notions of free will and predestination [TS]

00:04:39   and all that stuff while also being a [TS]

00:04:42   good story and being good sci-fi and it [TS]

00:04:45   really moving me one of the things [TS]

00:04:47   that's it i think this is a classic ted [TS]

00:04:49   chang characteristic is that your [TS]

00:04:51   narrator is not to be trusted but it's [TS]

00:04:54   not an unreliable narrator in the sense [TS]

00:04:55   of like everything she says is a lie but [TS]

00:04:57   more like you really have to read it [TS]

00:04:59   carefully because she's telling you [TS]

00:05:00   things that seem to be absolute facts [TS]

00:05:02   and then anybody in the story like wait [TS]

00:05:04   a minute and i think i've read some of [TS]

00:05:05   these stories three or four maybe this [TS]

00:05:06   one probably five times as many more I [TS]

00:05:09   over the years and on multiple readings [TS]

00:05:13   are like she she refuses to knowledge [TS]

00:05:16   how she's changed reality how she's [TS]

00:05:19   changed from future you know she's [TS]

00:05:20   saying it's impossible and that's part [TS]

00:05:22   of the malleability of of Chinese [TS]

00:05:24   writing is that he is really fascinated [TS]

00:05:26   with the notion of how much is under our [TS]

00:05:28   own control how much to outside forces [TS]

00:05:30   whether it's God or aliens or God aliens [TS]

00:05:33   you know God kings and King gods are in [TS]

00:05:36   charge of us are robots human beings and [TS]

00:05:39   their power is derived from strange [TS]

00:05:41   motive force like all these things but [TS]

00:05:43   what is actually allowing us to make [TS]

00:05:45   decisions what we think is along this [TS]

00:05:47   make decisions and how do we ascend [TS]

00:05:49   beyond that and so this is I think this [TS]

00:05:52   is like the perfect gem of a story both [TS]

00:05:55   on a larger scale inside all the [TS]

00:05:56   collections to it's funny that you [TS]

00:05:58   mentioned the idea that this is a [TS]

00:06:00   hacking your brain a little bit like [TS]

00:06:01   like you you said about an mi believe on [TS]

00:06:03   a previous podcast as well [TS]

00:06:05   not because that he's got me that's [TS]

00:06:07   actually the that's actually the point [TS]

00:06:09   of the story as well is that the the [TS]

00:06:13   main characters brain is hacked by her [TS]

00:06:17   understanding of this language which as [TS]

00:06:19   an old com major I I throw it back to [TS]

00:06:21   the sapir-whorf hypothesis that the way [TS]

00:06:23   your language describes the world [TS]

00:06:25   becomes the way you view the world and [TS]

00:06:28   it's taken to this kind of wacky sci fi [TS]

00:06:30   xtreme here where you've got an alien [TS]

00:06:32   race that doesn't essentially doesn't [TS]

00:06:34   believe in linear time there's this [TS]

00:06:36   whole concept that you know the universe [TS]

00:06:38   there is free will and yet the [TS]

00:06:39   same time every event in the time [TS]

00:06:41   history of the universe before you know [TS]

00:06:43   past and future it is happening [TS]

00:06:45   simultaneously and is sort of part of a [TS]

00:06:47   crystal or something like that and so [TS]

00:06:48   their concept of past present future [TS]

00:06:51   doesn't really exist and so as she [TS]

00:06:53   learns their language this is which has [TS]

00:06:55   got some crazy name it's like every race [TS]

00:06:58   her perception yeah it changes her [TS]

00:07:00   actual perception of time so that by the [TS]

00:07:02   time you get to the end and she's [TS]

00:07:04   learned heptapod be she good and she can [TS]

00:07:08   no longer perceive time when she can she [TS]

00:07:11   can perceive time in both ways because [TS]

00:07:13   she's learning this language but it is [TS]

00:07:15   that it's kind of Wow [TS]

00:07:17   far out man but it's it's in some ways [TS]

00:07:20   it's just what a good short story should [TS]

00:07:22   do right which is change your way of [TS]

00:07:24   thinking in some way except on this [TS]

00:07:26   crazy you know sci-fi scale with the [TS]

00:07:29   personal touch of her talking to her [TS]

00:07:32   child also throw in so there's a lot of [TS]

00:07:34   stuff in the blender the thing i noticed [TS]

00:07:36   when i was reading through the the [TS]

00:07:37   stories is I came to think of three [TS]

00:07:40   stories as sort of an interrelated [TS]

00:07:42   triptik on understand which is about a [TS]

00:07:44   guy who undergoes an experimental [TS]

00:07:47   treatment and becomes massively [TS]

00:07:51   intelligence it's what it's like flowers [TS]

00:07:53   for algernon yeah to the 10th power [TS]

00:07:55   yep you know only without the only [TS]

00:07:57   without the hideous regression but I saw [TS]

00:07:59   understand story of your life and 72 [TS]

00:08:02   letters as complementary works and the [TS]

00:08:05   reason I saw them Leslie is because in [TS]

00:08:07   every single one of them the power of [TS]

00:08:10   language to shape reality and to shape [TS]

00:08:13   perception is a pivotal part of the [TS]

00:08:15   story and what it reminded me of was the [TS]

00:08:18   plot point in snow crash where well you [TS]

00:08:21   know when when it turns out that there [TS]

00:08:23   is the generative grammar at the union [TS]

00:08:25   Steffensen bars very heavily from noam [TS]

00:08:27   chomsky early on linguistic theories [TS]

00:08:29   that you know there's a generative [TS]

00:08:31   generative grammar that is used to [TS]

00:08:32   describe reality as we know if you can [TS]

00:08:34   hack the grammar you can have human [TS]

00:08:35   behavior and i found that those ideas [TS]

00:08:38   were very subtly interwoven especially [TS]

00:08:40   through understand where the whole point [TS]

00:08:43   of the story is that the protagonist is [TS]

00:08:45   taken down by somebody who's grasp the [TS]

00:08:47   rules of the grammar faster than he has [TS]

00:08:49   and in story of your life the [TS]

00:08:52   protagonist at the center of it learns a [TS]

00:08:54   whole new grammar thanks to pod be and [TS]

00:08:57   that radically altered her perception of [TS]

00:08:59   space and time and then in 72 letters it [TS]

00:09:03   was the ability to assign a specific [TS]

00:09:06   etymology to a phenomena that is going [TS]

00:09:10   to change the way an entire species [TS]

00:09:12   reproduces and is going to fundamentally [TS]

00:09:13   alter human society couple generations [TS]

00:09:15   down the line and I found it fascinating [TS]

00:09:17   that he kept returning to this theme of [TS]

00:09:21   you know once you can decode the grammar [TS]

00:09:24   you can take you can decode reality or [TS]

00:09:26   once you alter a language you can alter [TS]

00:09:28   the outcome of reality it seems very [TS]

00:09:30   very much reflective of his day job [TS]

00:09:33   which is as a technical writer who [TS]

00:09:35   documents code you know it it deals with [TS]

00:09:37   closed systems and the idea that once [TS]

00:09:39   you decode once once you've been [TS]

00:09:41   mystified the system and set down the [TS]

00:09:42   boundaries and what the outcomes are [TS]

00:09:44   going to be in order to change the [TS]

00:09:46   outcome all you have to do is is is [TS]

00:09:47   understand manipulate the parameters i [TS]

00:09:50   want to read a very short passage to [TS]

00:09:52   take a lead from Jason style is [TS]

00:09:54   carefully marked stuff in previous [TS]

00:09:55   podcast to read on this this requires a [TS]

00:09:58   spoiler or I think it does get away with [TS]

00:10:00   more of the story of your life away but [TS]

00:10:01   it says them it's a I don't have the [TS]

00:10:03   page 107 in a some addition here [TS]

00:10:06   uh-huh and it's the this the first [TS]

00:10:09   person narrator narrator is talking [TS]

00:10:10   about how about a was the spoken [TS]

00:10:12   language and have to plot B is this [TS]

00:10:13   written language that they've been [TS]

00:10:14   working at it like a simultaneous [TS]

00:10:16   writing where you write the whole [TS]

00:10:17   concept all at once but you seem to need [TS]

00:10:19   to know the entire outcome to write the [TS]

00:10:22   idea Graham that the sort of resident [TS]

00:10:25   rub presentation of the idea such as [TS]

00:10:27   before I learn how to think and heptapod [TS]

00:10:29   be my memories crew like a column of [TS]

00:10:31   cigarette ash laid down by the [TS]

00:10:33   infinitesimal sliver of combustion that [TS]

00:10:35   was my consciousness marking the [TS]

00:10:36   sequential present after I learned at [TS]

00:10:38   the top heptapod be new memories fell [TS]

00:10:40   into place like gigantic blocks each one [TS]

00:10:43   measuring years in duration and though [TS]

00:10:45   they didn't arrive in order or land [TS]

00:10:46   continuously they soon composed a period [TS]

00:10:49   of five decades is the period period [TS]

00:10:51   during which i don't have to hide be [TS]

00:10:52   well enough to thinking it starting [TS]

00:10:54   during my interviews with flapper and [TS]

00:10:55   raspberry the two aliens and ending with [TS]

00:10:57   my deaf [TS]

00:10:58   and for me that encapsulates the stories [TS]

00:11:00   just terrifying thing where she is [TS]

00:11:02   gaining not only the perception of the [TS]

00:11:04   future but the perception of how she [TS]

00:11:06   perceives the future as well it's it's a [TS]

00:11:09   beautiful passages and it's also one of [TS]

00:11:12   the things I've noticed his linguistic [TS]

00:11:14   seems to be something that several sites [TS]

00:11:16   by authors tend to return to over and [TS]

00:11:17   over again for example r us at all [TS]

00:11:21   familiar with from suzette elgin Hayden [TS]

00:11:25   don't know what naughty that's not us [TS]

00:11:28   not even Scott you stop the band Lisa [TS]

00:11:31   she wrote a trilogy although the third [TS]

00:11:34   book as is the case in many trilogies [TS]

00:11:36   the book was many many years after the [TS]

00:11:37   first two and goes off in the whole [TS]

00:11:39   wacky we're direction but the premise of [TS]

00:11:42   her first two books is that alien races [TS]

00:11:45   have made contact with humans and as a [TS]

00:11:48   result linguists have managed to [TS]

00:11:50   consolidate most of the political [TS]

00:11:51   economic power [TS]

00:11:53   I like that imagine academics must love [TS]

00:11:59   those books [TS]

00:12:00   well in there i think one of the reasons [TS]

00:12:02   she's not widely known is because it's [TS]

00:12:04   also set in a dystopian future where [TS]

00:12:06   women have been reduced to legal channel [TS]

00:12:08   and so what the books talk about is the [TS]

00:12:11   way women create a subversive language [TS]

00:12:13   of their own to foment social rebellion [TS]

00:12:15   and it actually fails but aside from [TS]

00:12:18   that down or outcome what's really [TS]

00:12:19   fascinating is how interwoven through [TS]

00:12:21   the books um is the contention that the [TS]

00:12:25   more aware you become of how language is [TS]

00:12:28   put together the more where you become [TS]

00:12:30   of how your perceptions of the world are [TS]

00:12:32   assembled and that by altering one or [TS]

00:12:34   altering the other you know you can [TS]

00:12:36   change the way you think and that [TS]

00:12:37   changes the way you communicate or you [TS]

00:12:39   can change the way you communicate and [TS]

00:12:41   that in turn will influence your [TS]

00:12:42   perceptions and create a feedback loop [TS]

00:12:44   that alters the outcomes of what you [TS]

00:12:46   want to do i think not surprising the [TS]

00:12:48   writers would get into this stuff given [TS]

00:12:50   them the entire idea of writing [TS]

00:12:52   something is to put words in a sequence [TS]

00:12:55   that causes an audience to have a [TS]

00:12:58   reaction and behave in a certain way or [TS]

00:13:01   think in a certain way that is what a [TS]

00:13:03   writer does so you know but you but you [TS]

00:13:06   know the way Chang does it as he puts it [TS]

00:13:08   in this kind of amazing a very well [TS]

00:13:10   executed [TS]

00:13:11   I was going to say sci-fi trapping [TS]

00:13:14   although a lot of his stuff is is is [TS]

00:13:16   weirder than that even I mean I [TS]

00:13:18   understand is a very almost cyberpunk [TS]

00:13:21   kind of story about this guy who [TS]

00:13:23   infiltrates the computer networks and [TS]

00:13:26   because he's super intelligent and he [TS]

00:13:28   finds he's got a counterpart in a [TS]

00:13:30   essentially have this little motion [TS]

00:13:32   high-speed simultaneously dual-band [TS]

00:13:35   story of your life has wacky aliens who [TS]

00:13:38   appear and our are like big octopus [TS]

00:13:41   aliens but he's got some other other [TS]

00:13:45   stories that are in a very different [TS]

00:13:48   tower of Babylon and a story that's not [TS]

00:13:51   in his collection the merchant at the [TS]

00:13:53   alchemist gate are both stories that [TS]

00:13:56   have a middle eastern flavor and our are [TS]

00:13:59   clearly sort of sci-fi or fantasy in one [TS]

00:14:02   way and yet in and they don't have that [TS]

00:14:04   flavor at all there that it's an [TS]

00:14:06   entirely different much more exotic you [TS]

00:14:08   know not your usual setting for a for a [TS]

00:14:11   sci-fi story so we kind of goes all over [TS]

00:14:13   the place [TS]

00:14:14   yeah and i will say that the tower of [TS]

00:14:16   Babylon was my least favorite story and [TS]

00:14:20   it is the first one in the compilation [TS]

00:14:23   so I thought folks this is not going [TS]

00:14:25   well you know I you warned me about that [TS]

00:14:27   and I went back some like life all the [TS]

00:14:29   stories were great and then went back [TS]

00:14:30   was like oh yeah that one's a little you [TS]

00:14:33   know tedious [TS]

00:14:34   yeah well I mean yeah it's a guy [TS]

00:14:36   ascending the tower and it goes on it [TS]

00:14:39   does go on to build and then at the end [TS]

00:14:41   there kind of is this where it went [TS]

00:14:45   oh you know it kind of reminded me of [TS]

00:14:48   some of James Morrow's work are you guys [TS]

00:14:50   familiar jamesemorrow know it's only [TS]

00:14:52   dream only but only got daughter where [TS]

00:14:55   somebody raises the the immaculately [TS]

00:14:58   conceived daughter of god on telling [TS]

00:15:01   Jehovah Jehovah more jobs body falls to [TS]

00:15:04   earth manage a close [TS]

00:15:06   he's one of my favorite authors he did a [TS]

00:15:08   collection of short stories Bible [TS]

00:15:09   stories for adults where he also has a [TS]

00:15:12   Tower of Babel story a better one [TS]

00:15:16   oh yeah oh yeah except James burrows a [TS]

00:15:19   lot angrier than Ted chanc so it's you [TS]

00:15:22   can't really read him when you're [TS]

00:15:23   feeling bad about yourself for Humanity [TS]

00:15:25   because you'll end up just you know Oh [TS]

00:15:26   what is the what is the meaning of it [TS]

00:15:28   all but he's worth reading if you're not [TS]

00:15:30   if you're in a calm emotionally level [TS]

00:15:32   black towing job is as a good one [TS]

00:15:36   because they you know he got dies and [TS]

00:15:39   remind his corpse floating in the ocean [TS]

00:15:40   just amuses me so so Lisa to you have am [TS]

00:15:46   is your is your sort of pick for the [TS]

00:15:48   story that you found most interesting is [TS]

00:15:49   that is that understand or is it the [TS]

00:15:51   trip ticket or do you have something [TS]

00:15:52   else [TS]

00:15:53   the triptych i thought was fascinating [TS]

00:15:54   automatic perspective and I thought that [TS]

00:15:57   perhaps tells you a lot about ideas that [TS]

00:15:59   that the author is perpetually chewing [TS]

00:16:01   over my favorite story out of all of [TS]

00:16:03   them and i'm not sure this wasn't the [TS]

00:16:05   collections exhalation right I think [TS]

00:16:08   that's not in the collection yeah i [TS]

00:16:10   really enjoyed exhalation a lot of the [TS]

00:16:13   process of this this piece that an [TS]

00:16:16   anatomist from its particular species [TS]

00:16:18   like the robots with the iron lungs is [TS]

00:16:20   that you under yeah who undertakes to [TS]

00:16:22   detect his own brain and and discovers [TS]

00:16:24   that their unit that the universe is in [TS]

00:16:25   fact shrinking it was a chase and thank [TS]

00:16:28   you for sucking all the beauty that's [TS]

00:16:30   general practice with what is good god [TS]

00:16:32   is so I I got to say that was the [TS]

00:16:34   nominee there's a hugo and how many last [TS]

00:16:36   year and I and I got to the list and I i [TS]

00:16:38   got to that one like no Chet chang and I [TS]

00:16:40   red nose like wow this is a story about [TS]

00:16:43   some sentient robots who are who have [TS]

00:16:46   evolved from an iron lung machine [TS]

00:16:49   yeah okay and they use gold and they use [TS]

00:16:52   gold to conduct their thoughts and he [TS]

00:16:53   figures that a relationship and then [TS]

00:16:55   says okay by the way we're all doomed [TS]

00:16:57   so i'm writing this down because [TS]

00:16:58   eventually our universe is going to wind [TS]

00:17:00   down but maybe somebody who's a [TS]

00:17:01   different species will find us and it [TS]

00:17:03   was the combination of the investigative [TS]

00:17:05   spirit in the story and the tragedy of [TS]

00:17:08   an entire species dying due to the law [TS]

00:17:10   of physics and the hopefulness of [TS]

00:17:12   discovery and I thought wow this is [TS]

00:17:14   pretty much encapsulated so what one [TS]

00:17:17   would hope would be the best of any [TS]

00:17:18   sentient species so i really liked the [TS]

00:17:20   story i think i think it has a lot in [TS]

00:17:24   common with his most recent work the [TS]

00:17:28   lifestyle goals lifecycle of software [TS]

00:17:30   objects in that and going back to him [TS]

00:17:32   being a tech writer it is about that [TS]

00:17:34   process and and you know there is that [TS]

00:17:36   something technical about some of the [TS]

00:17:38   stuff that [TS]

00:17:39   he writes especially those two stories [TS]

00:17:40   where it's about investigating and [TS]

00:17:43   learning you know whether it's [TS]

00:17:44   developing software or being this [TS]

00:17:46   sentiment among machine that learns [TS]

00:17:48   about the universe [TS]

00:17:50   I'm sorry that I sucked everything out i [TS]

00:17:52   didn't i didn't really I didn't really [TS]

00:17:54   like that story it was i was in it and i [TS]

00:17:56   think i was actually so excited it was [TS]

00:17:57   by ted chang and I read it and I was [TS]

00:17:58   that kind of a letdown but I thought it [TS]

00:18:00   was very creative i I think that it was [TS]

00:18:02   a little bit mind-blowing in the sense [TS]

00:18:04   that it is about this really weird alien [TS]

00:18:07   what you know creature who is still [TS]

00:18:09   striving to understand the universe [TS]

00:18:11   around it but would you agree that one [TS]

00:18:13   of the Ted changs I think great [TS]

00:18:15   characteristic is that it's clear he's [TS]

00:18:17   always exploring an incredible creep [TS]

00:18:19   conceit and sometimes it's like a sketch [TS]

00:18:21   like you look at an artist working it's [TS]

00:18:22   like that's the pencil they didn't fill [TS]

00:18:24   it in but it's still sort of interesting [TS]

00:18:26   and are in writers don't usually have [TS]

00:18:27   their writers notebooks get published or [TS]

00:18:29   they talk about their ideas and I feel [TS]

00:18:31   sometimes like ted chang for [TS]

00:18:33   understanding works as we started out [TS]

00:18:34   very deliberately so this is the body of [TS]

00:18:36   his work and you know you're pissed i'm [TS]

00:18:37   sort of guy like I wish I'd novels from [TS]

00:18:40   this fellow and I don't think he works [TS]

00:18:41   that way but I think some of these [TS]

00:18:43   stories like that it's like this is a [TS]

00:18:45   fascinating idea sketched out briefly [TS]

00:18:47   and a in a well-written fashion but it's [TS]

00:18:49   not a story you know it's an idea [TS]

00:18:52   it's a conceit and all of the stories [TS]

00:18:53   had a great conceit at the center and i [TS]

00:18:57   think that you know how that's a common [TS]

00:18:58   complaint with sci-fi authors in general [TS]

00:19:01   right that their ideas are better than [TS]

00:19:03   their writing [TS]

00:19:04   no I didn't we say that you get you end [TS]

00:19:06   up with one good idea and you read if [TS]

00:19:08   you're lucky and you put a novel around [TS]

00:19:09   it because that like the first podcast i [TS]

00:19:12   think it's true i'm still waiting for my [TS]

00:19:13   good idea but I think that changs hit he [TS]

00:19:17   is such a good writer and his ideas are [TS]

00:19:20   so unique that I think that like you [TS]

00:19:22   said I think it's a shame that he hasn't [TS]

00:19:23   written a novel sure how would we care [TS]

00:19:27   about them i think the lifecycle of [TS]

00:19:28   software objects which is a very long [TS]

00:19:30   work actually shit makes me wonder what [TS]

00:19:33   the tip the the theoretical ted chang [TS]

00:19:35   novel would would be like because I [TS]

00:19:38   think lifecycle of software objects is [TS]

00:19:40   not one of his better works it's one of [TS]

00:19:42   his longer works but I I'm not sure I i [TS]

00:19:44   actually prefer it to some of the time [TS]

00:19:46   3i it feels like a very thin idea spread [TS]

00:19:49   out it's like a Saturday Live sketch [TS]

00:19:51   turned into a movie it's a little bit [TS]

00:19:53   loud last night at the roxbury thought I [TS]

00:19:55   was being heart [TS]

00:19:56   yeah night at the Roxbury 00 and you [TS]

00:19:59   thought meet with the iron lung machine [TS]

00:20:01   was hard but I had to try to top you are [TS]

00:20:03   some authors who are much better with [TS]

00:20:05   their ideas because they're in this tiny [TS]

00:20:07   little bubble and you know just enough [TS]

00:20:09   about it to get you sinking into the old [TS]

00:20:11   what if and and it lets you explore the [TS]

00:20:14   idea but there's not so much detail [TS]

00:20:16   where you can pay attention to whether [TS]

00:20:17   this this world is built out of plywood [TS]

00:20:19   or wow this item is another profound [TS]

00:20:21   isn't supposed to be what we have a [TS]

00:20:23   great pitching stories this world is [TS]

00:20:25   built out of plywood no matter what my [TS]

00:20:27   classic example of that is Nancy crisis [TS]

00:20:29   beggars in spain which is a really good [TS]

00:20:30   marbella um you know it's basically what [TS]

00:20:33   happens if you create a class of people [TS]

00:20:34   who'd ever need to sleep and its [TS]

00:20:37   antennae and it's a fantastic short [TS]

00:20:39   story and velour novella but when she [TS]

00:20:42   stretched out to a novel and then again [TS]

00:20:44   made a trilogy you lost the original [TS]

00:20:47   cool idea which is how fundamentally [TS]

00:20:52   altered someone's character when they [TS]

00:20:53   don't have that downtime when they don't [TS]

00:20:55   dream when they're constantly 24-7 you [TS]

00:20:58   lose that really cool idea and it turned [TS]

00:21:00   instead into this really weird this [TS]

00:21:01   mishmash of bioengineering and class [TS]

00:21:05   warfare and and americans are dumb and [TS]

00:21:07   consume too much and I would have rather [TS]

00:21:10   that she had just stopped with the short [TS]

00:21:12   story you know Greg bears great novella [TS]

00:21:16   blood music got turned and he turned it [TS]

00:21:18   into a novel and exactly the same thing [TS]

00:21:20   happened he added some some sort of [TS]

00:21:22   dubious action scenes and he starts [TS]

00:21:24   earlier in the story and does a lot of [TS]

00:21:27   expansion of of stuff that you know that [TS]

00:21:31   the short story or or novella novelera [TS]

00:21:34   you know whatever the smaller work is [TS]

00:21:36   pared back to the things that are [TS]

00:21:38   required to tell the story and and you [TS]

00:21:41   know it may not necessarily be that way [TS]

00:21:44   if you start with a novel but if you [TS]

00:21:45   start with a short story and expanded [TS]

00:21:47   you can you can sort of see that that [TS]

00:21:49   it's really the stuff that would have [TS]

00:21:51   thrown out right at the stuff that [TS]

00:21:52   wasn't essential and suddenly it's the [TS]

00:21:54   padding and it's kind of disappointing [TS]

00:21:56   or you don't like the direction it goes [TS]

00:21:58   in for example David Mary second one of [TS]

00:22:01   my favorite short story authors for [TS]

00:22:02   science fiction and one of the most [TS]

00:22:04   poignant short [TS]

00:22:05   oh and he's been one of the most [TS]

00:22:06   poignant science fiction short stories [TS]

00:22:07   of a red titled we were out of our minds [TS]

00:22:10   with joy and i love that story if it has [TS]

00:22:13   stuck with me ever since I read it back [TS]

00:22:14   in 1995 i will occasionally read it and [TS]

00:22:17   still get choked up over it it is the [TS]

00:22:20   first chapter of his 2005 novel counting [TS]

00:22:23   heads and you know I ran out paid for [TS]

00:22:25   the hardcover which i never do read the [TS]

00:22:27   book and ended up just bitterly [TS]

00:22:29   disappointed because he took well he [TS]

00:22:31   took the short story it was of course [TS]

00:22:32   the first chapter of the book and don't [TS]

00:22:35   get me wrong i think he did some very [TS]

00:22:36   creative things in the book and I admire [TS]

00:22:39   that he had the courage to take his [TS]

00:22:40   characters and pushed in different [TS]

00:22:42   directions but it they weren't the [TS]

00:22:44   directions and the ideas that I had sort [TS]

00:22:47   of taken away from the short story they [TS]

00:22:49   were his vision and as a result its I [TS]

00:22:51   sort of had a bad taste in my mouth [TS]

00:22:52   because you know you finish the short [TS]

00:22:54   story and you've had this little shared [TS]

00:22:55   experience and you've got your little [TS]

00:22:58   bubble of perception about how you've [TS]

00:22:59   digested the story and the author sure [TS]

00:23:01   has their bubble of perception but you [TS]

00:23:03   have this nifty Levin diagram that [TS]

00:23:05   overlaps whereas with a novel that every [TS]

00:23:08   of overlap becomes much much smaller [TS]

00:23:10   relative to the size of the work so [TS]

00:23:12   there's a much more room for [TS]

00:23:13   disappointment on the readers part that [TS]

00:23:15   is interesting is I have I read that [TS]

00:23:17   book [TS]

00:23:18   oh maybe two years ago and i really [TS]

00:23:20   liked it and I had no idea it was a [TS]

00:23:21   short story but he had written any kind [TS]

00:23:24   of short story [TS]

00:23:24   oh yeah he's got a collection that came [TS]

00:23:27   out like 2007 but we're out of our minds [TS]

00:23:29   of joy think it first appeared in [TS]

00:23:31   mirrored shades [TS]

00:23:33   um I remember reading an idiot eat it [TS]

00:23:35   might have been in the year's best [TS]

00:23:36   science fiction anthology but i do I [TS]

00:23:38   definitely remember reading I can't [TS]

00:23:39   remember which anthology i read in the [TS]

00:23:40   first so Scott you had no idea that no I [TS]

00:23:43   had and I thought the the novel was [TS]

00:23:45   great so clearly i'm glad i didn't read [TS]

00:23:48   the short story because they looked [TS]

00:23:49   disappointed [TS]

00:23:50   no I like the novel on one level but it [TS]

00:23:52   was terribly disappointing and another [TS]

00:23:53   level that makes sense well because [TS]

00:23:55   because you know you're seeing you're [TS]

00:23:57   aware of the things that are not [TS]

00:23:58   necessary for the what you felt was the [TS]

00:24:00   main thrust of the you know the story [TS]

00:24:02   lifecycle software objects i mean i [TS]

00:24:04   think you can argue that one of the [TS]

00:24:07   reasons that it might be a little bit [TS]

00:24:08   disappointing i'm not sure if everybody [TS]

00:24:10   I mean Glen and I seem to think that way [TS]

00:24:11   is is that there's a little bit of [TS]

00:24:14   misdirection because i think because the [TS]

00:24:15   sci-fi trope that's on display there is [TS]

00:24:18   this whole idea of art [TS]

00:24:19   official intelligences and you know do [TS]

00:24:21   that we've seen I mean they're Star Trek [TS]

00:24:22   episodes about this right is it alive [TS]

00:24:24   and doesn't have rights and all of these [TS]

00:24:26   things and in the end I sort of felt [TS]

00:24:29   like what I was actually reading and I [TS]

00:24:31   actually like the story better if I [TS]

00:24:32   think of it this way is it's about it is [TS]

00:24:35   literally about the abandonment of [TS]

00:24:37   software and not about people at all [TS]

00:24:39   it's about the fact that technology and [TS]

00:24:42   software you know even things that are [TS]

00:24:44   incredibly well loved and popular [TS]

00:24:46   inevitably there is the there is the end [TS]

00:24:49   of the life cycle [TS]

00:24:50   yeah where they where where nobody uses [TS]

00:24:52   Microsoft Word 5.1 anymore right [TS]

00:24:55   everybody this is my problem with them [TS]

00:24:56   toys story to the one problem i had with [TS]

00:24:58   that movie [TS]

00:24:59   this will sound like i'm talking like I [TS]

00:25:00   just woke up in the middle of the [TS]

00:25:01   conversation LOL when looking back was [TS]

00:25:04   no was the what's the connection is [TS]

00:25:05   jesse idea yet you have a bit where [TS]

00:25:08   she's thrown into a box and abandoned on [TS]

00:25:10   the side of the road was this horrible [TS]

00:25:13   like I watched and I was filled with [TS]

00:25:14   this this horrible void filled universal [TS]

00:25:18   dread that was because it was like you [TS]

00:25:20   know there's already this huge conceit [TS]

00:25:22   that the toys are only sort of alive [TS]

00:25:24   when they're around kids or when they're [TS]

00:25:25   not around kids but they sort of [TS]

00:25:26   experience their lives only through this [TS]

00:25:29   mediation of children and then it's like [TS]

00:25:30   goodbyes pulling out the window you're [TS]

00:25:33   not important anymore and it sounds like [TS]

00:25:34   toy story 3 I haven't seen it yet [TS]

00:25:36   starts with a little bit of that same [TS]

00:25:37   fear oh it actually goes through [TS]

00:25:39   throughout honestly fifties and there's [TS]

00:25:41   something about that like where where [TS]

00:25:43   you're the kind of empathy you have with [TS]

00:25:45   I mean I think life cycle of software [TS]

00:25:47   objects i don't mean to compare tonight [TS]

00:25:49   the rocks breaks it's not horrible [TS]

00:25:50   anymore like it has that sense of being [TS]

00:25:52   stretched way too thin to transparency [TS]

00:25:55   but he has that idea of like there's [TS]

00:25:57   this incredible loyalty between the that [TS]

00:26:00   designers and Donna and and the thing [TS]

00:26:03   that she makes because the thing that [TS]

00:26:05   she makes becomes real as real as [TS]

00:26:08   anything else so i think that i think [TS]

00:26:10   you're right that it actually is trying [TS]

00:26:12   to represent that feeling of a banding [TS]

00:26:14   stuff that still may be used for what [TS]

00:26:17   you think it's things like you know hey [TS]

00:26:19   here's this ipod that I i used in the [TS]

00:26:21   delivery room when we had you know when [TS]

00:26:23   we had one of our kids you know and [TS]

00:26:25   there's this level of sentimentality [TS]

00:26:27   over or it's like oh yeah i used to use [TS]

00:26:29   that computer i use that program you [TS]

00:26:31   know I think it [TS]

00:26:32   technology a2 and not just sort of [TS]

00:26:35   inanimate objects like like a stuffed [TS]

00:26:38   animals you know you have this sort of [TS]

00:26:40   the this life cycle and and by [TS]

00:26:42   personifying and these artificial [TS]

00:26:44   intelligence creations that makes an [TS]

00:26:46   interesting sight again it with the [TS]

00:26:48   interesting sci-fi wrapper around [TS]

00:26:49   something else is trying to say but in [TS]

00:26:51   the end I thought it was actually like [TS]

00:26:53   me the the most this is another one of [TS]

00:26:55   those where I'm liking it more now that [TS]

00:26:57   i think about it then when I was [TS]

00:26:58   actually reading it it's it's it's in [TS]

00:27:00   some ways the most artful way to [TS]

00:27:01   describe this sort of natural process [TS]

00:27:03   that things things move on and although [TS]

00:27:07   they seem important eventually we we all [TS]

00:27:09   just abandoned them and it's not that [TS]

00:27:11   they'd it's not the story of everything [TS]

00:27:13   dies because that's different this is [TS]

00:27:15   eventually everything that we make is [TS]

00:27:18   abandoned and and you may get you know [TS]

00:27:21   you may be on the end of the bell curve [TS]

00:27:23   with it like those people who have the [TS]

00:27:25   the Apple to convention every year and [TS]

00:27:28   the human convention every year but [TS]

00:27:30   HyperCard forever yeah but in the end [TS]

00:27:32   but you know just like the ai's in the [TS]

00:27:35   life cycle of software objects and even [TS]

00:27:37   the greatest supporters of of this [TS]

00:27:39   technology and as it becomes outmoded [TS]

00:27:41   and it's not compatible with new [TS]

00:27:43   hardware and all these things that the [TS]

00:27:45   computer users no happen you know it [TS]

00:27:47   they just you know they fade away and [TS]

00:27:49   and in this case it's poignant because [TS]

00:27:51   they're sort of these sentient creatures [TS]

00:27:53   who basically get put in a box and it's [TS]

00:27:56   not like they died as much as they just [TS]

00:27:58   ceased to move forward and that's the [TS]

00:28:00   end this was the most negatively [TS]

00:28:03   sentimental story I thought and that's [TS]

00:28:05   saying a lot given that the collection [TS]

00:28:06   also features of a parent group grieving [TS]

00:28:09   the death of a child [TS]

00:28:10   uh-huh regretting the idea i thought [TS]

00:28:13   there was something I thought that I [TS]

00:28:14   thought there was some elements of pesos [TS]

00:28:16   in that were perhaps not necessary and I [TS]

00:28:19   understand they may be there to amplify [TS]

00:28:21   his point because changa said well I [TS]

00:28:22   wrote this book this story to point out [TS]

00:28:24   i don't think a is going to work until [TS]

00:28:27   people value that value it enough to [TS]

00:28:29   pour in a lot of time and effort and [TS]

00:28:31   love into what they're doing man and i [TS]

00:28:35   think it's an admirable point but when [TS]

00:28:37   you make the delay is incredibly cute [TS]

00:28:40   and you give them a pigeon grammar [TS]

00:28:42   because all they're just learning how to [TS]

00:28:43   speak and you know it looks like wacky [TS]

00:28:46   lovable cartoon characters but yeah and [TS]

00:28:48   at the end and they have an adorable and [TS]

00:28:50   they have adorable little avatar that [TS]

00:28:52   are specially printed before them [TS]

00:28:53   another day another would've worn by the [TS]

00:28:56   way which is not great I think he's [TS]

00:28:58   really putting a lot of that they're put [TS]

00:28:59   in porn event yeah right resolution [TS]

00:29:02   enough to express I want to be [TS]

00:29:03   independent but I'm still really cute [TS]

00:29:05   and really dependent so and there's just [TS]

00:29:07   a lot of buttons being pushed there at [TS]

00:29:09   that I thought way not to mention the [TS]

00:29:11   romantic subplot what you felt was just [TS]

00:29:14   you know again we service all very [TS]

00:29:16   you're not content on consummated or [TS]

00:29:19   even fulfilling and all but you know [TS]

00:29:21   it's the old like why do people like [TS]

00:29:23   ladybugs and hate cockroaches because [TS]

00:29:26   okay yeah or disrepute well so cute [TS]

00:29:29   cockroaches what's wrong with you well [TS]

00:29:30   this story also points out what I like [TS]

00:29:32   to think of as the animal problem in [TS]

00:29:34   science fiction [TS]

00:29:35   um which is that a lot of authors tend [TS]

00:29:38   to assume know in the future things will [TS]

00:29:40   be extinct in the future animals will [TS]

00:29:42   not be up something people even think [TS]

00:29:45   about anymore i can remember the first [TS]

00:29:47   time I read count 0 by william gibson [TS]

00:29:49   there was a throwaway line about horses [TS]

00:29:50   going extinct that just threw me for a [TS]

00:29:52   loop because I I was like can you [TS]

00:29:54   imagine a world without horses and yet [TS]

00:29:56   that was supposed to do in the future [TS]

00:29:57   courses they're extinct and in you know [TS]

00:30:01   this chanc story on ax is a zoo keeper [TS]

00:30:03   who is obviously rendered obsolete [TS]

00:30:05   either because the user closing down or [TS]

00:30:08   animals r dot have died or whatever and [TS]

00:30:11   I just keep wondering why there can't be [TS]

00:30:14   good science fiction where there are [TS]

00:30:18   entities other than humans and [TS]

00:30:20   artificial intelligence [TS]

00:30:22   why do we have to kill other species [TS]

00:30:23   Williams heptapods will occasionally [TS]

00:30:27   you'll get to occasional get dolphins [TS]

00:30:29   for example like how it turns out the [TS]

00:30:30   aliens have been talking with the [TS]

00:30:31   dolphins the whole time left [TS]

00:30:33   David Bradley is David wrote a whole [TS]

00:30:35   series of we should all about that [TS]

00:30:37   sometimes I love those [TS]

00:30:38   I did too in high school my god yes in [TS]

00:30:41   high school now I feel really amateur [TS]

00:30:42   right yeah i just discovered them and I [TS]

00:30:46   i love i love the alien love scenes in [TS]

00:30:49   the seventeen-year-old girl reading [TS]

00:30:50   about lifting dolphins all my god [TS]

00:30:53   gorillas don't forget the ground was [TS]

00:30:54   it's like all right into [TS]

00:30:55   dragons are gonna rip we're all going to [TS]

00:30:57   regress and talk about their future [TS]

00:30:59   popular because clearly i think mr. [TS]

00:31:01   McNulty is not be consultants favorite [TS]

00:31:03   story at however i was going to ask [TS]

00:31:05   I'm sorry what ah that is true so i have [TS]

00:31:08   to that I like what's expected of us [TS]

00:31:12   which is probably the shortest shorts [TS]

00:31:14   underneath those in the was it in the [TS]

00:31:15   collection [TS]

00:31:17   no it's only extended part of its not [TS]

00:31:21   the so the one that is a good story it [TS]

00:31:23   basically you know it's about they [TS]

00:31:26   create this to someone crazy device that [TS]

00:31:28   all you do is push a button and it [TS]

00:31:30   lights up a light but the twist is that [TS]

00:31:32   the light lights up right before you [TS]

00:31:34   push the button and that leads people [TS]

00:31:36   down the road they realized that they [TS]

00:31:39   don't have free will and beautiful [TS]

00:31:41   society crumbles and people kill each [TS]

00:31:43   other and it's wonderful [TS]

00:31:44   they fall into catatonia exactly and [TS]

00:31:47   something like a page and a half long so [TS]

00:31:49   they're say there's a a story in the [TS]

00:31:53   year's best scientific every year I by [TS]

00:31:54   the gardener on a precipice because this [TS]

00:31:57   is it desired is I don't know but it's [TS]

00:32:00   one of those it's could be friendship [TS]

00:32:01   could be americanized but the year's [TS]

00:32:04   best science fiction anthology which is [TS]

00:32:05   great read it's worth you know I i [TS]

00:32:07   highly recommend it sits at you know you [TS]

00:32:09   get 30 short stories that you can take a [TS]

00:32:12   whole year to read them if you want and [TS]

00:32:13   just partial amount and there's some [TS]

00:32:15   really mind-blowing stuff in there but [TS]

00:32:16   there's a story in there and i can't i [TS]

00:32:19   can't think of the name of it now but [TS]

00:32:20   basically it's premise is very similar [TS]

00:32:23   which is the that uh that there are [TS]

00:32:27   studies that suggest which is true that [TS]

00:32:29   when they monitor somebody and they're [TS]

00:32:32   going to make a decision like to reach [TS]

00:32:33   out and press a button that they there [TS]

00:32:39   the moment where they decided to press [TS]

00:32:41   the button and reach out and press it [TS]

00:32:43   they're already moving to press it and [TS]

00:32:46   the idea is that that our consciousness [TS]

00:32:49   is not actually the decider of what [TS]

00:32:52   happens but more like the record keeper [TS]

00:32:55   of the decision so and what they what [TS]

00:32:58   they say in the short story is that is [TS]

00:33:00   that we're like the the Queen in the [TS]

00:33:02   castle and all of her servants come and [TS]

00:33:05   report to her about what's going on but [TS]

00:33:09   I you know but the servants do all the [TS]

00:33:11   work so we you know we're not in charge [TS]

00:33:14   were just the the the like the minutes [TS]

00:33:17   of the meeting executive function and [TS]

00:33:20   and in short story what happens is [TS]

00:33:22   there's this drug that makes you forget [TS]

00:33:24   that gets you high that kids take and if [TS]

00:33:27   you overdose on it it basically wipes [TS]

00:33:29   out your you're the queen of the castle [TS]

00:33:32   and so then a new person comes in and [TS]

00:33:35   they have all your memory all the [TS]

00:33:36   memories of this other character but [TS]

00:33:39   it's not the same person but very [TS]

00:33:42   similar in in like 15 times the length [TS]

00:33:44   Scott of the story that same idea that [TS]

00:33:47   that you know is it free will is it not [TS]

00:33:50   are you really the person who's making [TS]

00:33:52   any of the decisions or you or you just [TS]

00:33:54   the the the receipt right and I my [TS]

00:33:57   favorite part of the the story is at the [TS]

00:33:59   end so basically it's a letter basically [TS]

00:34:02   that sent from the future to the past [TS]

00:34:03   right [TS]

00:34:04   warning people about this and at the end [TS]

00:34:06   you know he said you don't have free [TS]

00:34:08   will so why am I telling you this [TS]

00:34:10   and the last line is something like [TS]

00:34:12   because I have to because he has no free [TS]

00:34:14   will so he has to send this letter [TS]

00:34:15   because it is predestined and there's [TS]

00:34:18   that he can't do anything about well you [TS]

00:34:19   know what this reminds me of is that [TS]

00:34:20   it's an isaac asimov story forgotten [TS]

00:34:22   it's a classic story where this guy is a [TS]

00:34:25   history professor studying like he's [TS]

00:34:28   trying he spent his whole career trying [TS]

00:34:29   to dispute the fact that Carthaginians [TS]

00:34:32   eight babies or something when they went [TS]

00:34:34   to war or something like that and he [TS]

00:34:36   finds there's some kind of institute [TS]

00:34:38   that's that uses from like time viewing [TS]

00:34:40   and they can look at events in the far [TS]

00:34:42   past and but they keep blaming it on [TS]

00:34:45   time for him that his pursuits 22 [TS]

00:34:47   trivial and so he meets a physicist at a [TS]

00:34:51   party this young guy and guys like well [TS]

00:34:53   you know if someone can do it this is a [TS]

00:34:55   this video is the argument the argument [TS]

00:34:57   that if you know someone can do [TS]

00:34:59   something if you don't know how then you [TS]

00:35:01   go and figure out how to do it because [TS]

00:35:02   someone else has and which has been [TS]

00:35:05   repeated throughout the history of [TS]

00:35:06   software hardware development sometimes [TS]

00:35:08   for someone thinks someone else is done [TS]

00:35:10   and they haven't they make the [TS]

00:35:11   breakthrough so in this story this [TS]

00:35:13   business is like well I should be that [TS]

00:35:14   hard because they've already done it so [TS]

00:35:15   they figure out he figures out a way he [TS]

00:35:17   and the scientists [TS]

00:35:18   the researcher managed to create a [TS]

00:35:21   machine less than view but the trick is [TS]

00:35:22   it doesn't feel the distant past he's [TS]

00:35:24   back like one-second anywhere in the [TS]

00:35:27   world so they get burst in at the last [TS]

00:35:30   minute I like the time police you know [TS]

00:35:31   time place the time you are police were [TS]

00:35:32   like oh my god you know what you've done [TS]

00:35:34   you spread this knowledge now we all [TS]

00:35:36   live in a glass bubble always no one's [TS]

00:35:38   actions will ever be unnoticed again [TS]

00:35:40   because everyone can have one of these [TS]

00:35:41   things and then you know the twist was [TS]

00:35:43   they only talked about things happening [TS]

00:35:45   in the far past the people wouldn't [TS]

00:35:46   think about turning the time you're back [TS]

00:35:48   one second you've destroyed us all [TS]

00:35:50   oh so what's your other pics my other [TS]

00:35:55   favorite as hell is the absence of God [TS]

00:35:58   really want you can get through that 1i [TS]

00:36:02   I like a I was raised Roman Catholic so [TS]

00:36:05   I like things with religion goes hardly [TS]

00:36:08   haha that's why we're gonna get through [TS]

00:36:10   another former Catholic somebody got it [TS]

00:36:14   that's the one where the guy's wife is [TS]

00:36:16   like killed me by the heavenly [TS]

00:36:18   visitation [TS]

00:36:18   yeah like an angel appears and then [TS]

00:36:21   there's collateral damage she gets [TS]

00:36:24   killed [TS]

00:36:24   yeah so finally in the in the the [TS]

00:36:26   setting of the story angels appear on a [TS]

00:36:29   semi-regular basis and they you know [TS]

00:36:32   bring tidings from God and they also [TS]

00:36:35   happen to cause earthquakes and all [TS]

00:36:38   kinds of things and people died and i [TS]

00:36:40   think their act of god they're not sure [TS]

00:36:42   Bob exactly which is I think of anybody [TS]

00:36:45   throw a part of the whole story and at [TS]

00:36:49   the end and so people died and then i [TS]

00:36:51   guess during when you want an angel is [TS]

00:36:53   around and someone dies you can see [TS]

00:36:55   where their soul goes so they know if [TS]

00:36:58   someone is going to heaven or hell and [TS]

00:37:01   it's very depressing story if you get [TS]

00:37:03   all the way to the end but yeah I i [TS]

00:37:06   enjoyed it [TS]

00:37:07   we'll see that's anxious because you are [TS]

00:37:10   black heart because they have like an 18 [TS]

00:37:12   and there's a character who was born so [TS]

00:37:16   it there's another part of the story [TS]

00:37:17   where people go to where they think an [TS]

00:37:20   angel is going to appear because when an [TS]

00:37:22   angel appears the light of God proceeds [TS]

00:37:24   it and when light of God hits people it [TS]

00:37:27   can cure them of disease or it can [TS]

00:37:30   unfortunately change their DNA [TS]

00:37:32   so that bad things happen and there's a [TS]

00:37:35   character in the story who was born [TS]

00:37:37   without legs and so she refuses to go [TS]

00:37:40   after an angel because she wants to she [TS]

00:37:44   wants people to accept their limitations [TS]

00:37:45   and be happy with who they are living [TS]

00:37:47   their life trying to come across a [TS]

00:37:49   random event that will make their life [TS]

00:37:51   better and then through a series of [TS]

00:37:53   events she happens to be in an area [TS]

00:37:56   where an angel appears and she gets her [TS]

00:37:58   legs back and everyone's like oh now [TS]

00:38:00   you're you know you're it kind of ruins [TS]

00:38:03   your whole character and then later on [TS]

00:38:06   she's an angel again and her she becomes [TS]

00:38:09   blind but not only blind she becomes a [TS]

00:38:11   creature who never had site so i thought [TS]

00:38:14   that she lost her eyes but she never was [TS]

00:38:17   she never had site uh-huh that's what [TS]

00:38:19   that's a really weird story is right [TS]

00:38:21   here stupid but I like weird stories [TS]

00:38:24   good for you it's nothing like that I'm [TS]

00:38:26   he reminds us of the short stories that [TS]

00:38:29   he's written in this collection we were [TS]

00:38:30   talking earlier about other kinds of [TS]

00:38:32   short story collections and things like [TS]

00:38:33   that again and again azimoff reference i [TS]

00:38:36   think i read too much as them off of the [TS]

00:38:37   child and my I was tainted [TS]

00:38:39   I don't anything everything this is the [TS]

00:38:43   future is all about psychohistory if not [TS]

00:38:46   go history think of zero at wawa serious [TS]

00:38:49   about Susan Calvin for president but the [TS]

00:38:54   thing I was thinking about was his he [TS]

00:38:55   had a short short collections but he [TS]

00:38:58   cannot which were super short stories [TS]

00:38:59   like a page and sometimes less and I [TS]

00:39:02   love their sort of a regressive tendency [TS]

00:39:04   is that you know there's sort of this is [TS]

00:39:06   the reason short stories involve was [TS]

00:39:07   that there were magazines too pretty [TS]

00:39:09   short stories that they weren't there [TS]

00:39:10   were the one amazing and all these great [TS]

00:39:12   science fiction magazines for thriving [TS]

00:39:15   in the thirties through the early [TS]

00:39:16   sixties or seventies that the they were [TS]

00:39:20   place people to write a certain length [TS]

00:39:21   that so much they could afford to pay [TS]

00:39:23   and people can better write that link [TS]

00:39:24   that ring novel length and you know that [TS]

00:39:26   being able to sell massive numbers of [TS]

00:39:28   science fiction novels this great [TS]

00:39:29   tradition of short stories [TS]

00:39:31   and in science fiction but i love the [TS]

00:39:33   fact that like people also write these [TS]

00:39:35   crazy short things that are like you [TS]

00:39:37   know and then the regressive parties [TS]

00:39:38   like between twitter and i think was it [TS]

00:39:40   wired magazine had a five-word fiction [TS]

00:39:42   contest that which was great and it was [TS]

00:39:44   one of them was about the future i have [TS]

00:39:48   to go look it up with something about [TS]

00:39:49   like time of us even five words told the [TS]

00:39:52   whole story that time wraps around and [TS]

00:39:55   it was like the best of the best one is [TS]

00:39:57   is a four for sale [TS]

00:40:00   baby shoes unused that doesn't take up [TS]

00:40:03   on the anyway which is great which is [TS]

00:40:05   for sale baby she's never worn [TS]

00:40:07   yeah that's it that's it so that's all [TS]

00:40:09   you need right six words explore 548 was [TS]

00:40:13   a man of few words to yeah but I like [TS]

00:40:15   that thing that you can have many [TS]

00:40:17   honorary higher because we like short [TS]

00:40:20   stories required short stories require a [TS]

00:40:23   lot of inference like a novel you can [TS]

00:40:25   stretch out and reckon you can learn the [TS]

00:40:27   landscape and the language and have your [TS]

00:40:29   brain rewired but a short story you have [TS]

00:40:31   to have sort of one central concept you [TS]

00:40:33   have to have to concede or some concedes [TS]

00:40:35   you have to tell it and we fill in the [TS]

00:40:37   rest you know that's I think what least [TS]

00:40:39   it was talking about like when you take [TS]

00:40:40   the short story two novel link all the [TS]

00:40:41   stuff we filled in becomes explicit and [TS]

00:40:44   you know becomes over and becomes less [TS]

00:40:45   interesting so I love these super short [TS]

00:40:47   swear it's like in like 200 words have [TS]

00:40:50   told this entire universe see when i was [TS]

00:40:52   in high school and college all I wrote [TS]

00:40:54   short stories and when i first tried to [TS]

00:40:56   write a novel it was fascinating because [TS]

00:40:58   I I got to see it from the other [TS]

00:40:59   direction when the short story you do [TS]

00:41:01   want to be concentrated here's my idea [TS]

00:41:03   I need to get from point A to point B [TS]

00:41:04   i'm going to do all the pieces that will [TS]

00:41:06   get me from point A to point B and i'm [TS]

00:41:07   done where is it a novel it's like well [TS]

00:41:09   okay I sort of know where I'm going [TS]

00:41:11   there a whole lot of characters i'm [TS]

00:41:13   going to detail all the all the steps [TS]

00:41:15   and I was surprised how easily i went [TS]

00:41:18   the longest story i had ever written was [TS]

00:41:20   about 10,000 words or nine thousand [TS]

00:41:22   words and you know and in 30 days i [TS]

00:41:24   wrote 50,000 and the the novel ended up [TS]

00:41:27   being a hundred and fifty thousand words [TS]

00:41:28   so you know but I think that's the [TS]

00:41:31   difference is if you go into it knowing [TS]

00:41:32   you're writing that length your approach [TS]

00:41:34   is very different and that's maybe where [TS]

00:41:37   the expansions fall apart is that you [TS]

00:41:39   know you're taking a short story premise [TS]

00:41:42   and just kind of inflating it instead of [TS]

00:41:44   saying no no this isn't that this is a [TS]

00:41:46   whole different kind of thing [TS]

00:41:48   uh-huh + 10 + 140 quatloos on the [TS]

00:41:56   newcomer but he has the ideas for me [TS]

00:42:12   really I mean he is you know he's he's [TS]

00:42:14   clearly when you talk to other [TS]

00:42:15   science-fiction writers and readers [TS]

00:42:17   that's like Chang is the science fiction [TS]

00:42:20   writers writer like he's the guy they [TS]

00:42:23   all like oh its head sank because he [TS]

00:42:25   writes so beautifully because he has [TS]

00:42:27   every story writes is a different story [TS]

00:42:29   even if there's some of the concept we [TS]

00:42:30   talking common he doesn't seem to reuse [TS]

00:42:32   central conceit even if there's any of [TS]

00:42:34   the themes are big but the conceits are [TS]

00:42:36   different so they're always like you [TS]

00:42:38   read about people but it's like all back [TS]

00:42:39   I like that kind of found an interview [TS]

00:42:41   with him where he said he was asked if [TS]

00:42:44   he has a novel in many said i don't know [TS]

00:42:46   if i get an idea for one sure but I I [TS]

00:42:48   don't ever expect to make a living being [TS]

00:42:50   a writer so I'm happy to just sort of [TS]

00:42:52   crank out a short story every now and [TS]

00:42:53   then which is interesting he doesn't [TS]

00:42:55   have any aspirations even though he's [TS]

00:42:57   this you know really praised writer he's [TS]

00:42:59   like yeah you know I'm not gonna I'm not [TS]

00:43:01   gonna do that may just be that he knows [TS]

00:43:03   that the volume that is required is not [TS]

00:43:05   something he can do i don't know well [TS]

00:43:07   some of some of us are Stephen King and [TS]

00:43:09   some of us are touch and sometimes [TS]

00:43:10   wonder if the if there is an inherent [TS]

00:43:14   tension between telling a good story and [TS]

00:43:16   exploring the limits of an idea within a [TS]

00:43:18   storytelling context because for example [TS]

00:43:22   i will argue with Harold Bloom even that [TS]

00:43:25   Stephen King is a fantastic story [TS]

00:43:27   terrible a short story on both in short [TS]

00:43:30   story and even novelistic form and I [TS]

00:43:33   think one of the reasons he is because [TS]

00:43:34   he doesn't necessarily necessarily [TS]

00:43:36   tackle big ideas he just strings [TS]

00:43:39   together event event event event event [TS]

00:43:41   so it in such a way where you want to [TS]

00:43:43   find out what happens next [TS]

00:43:45   whereas when you're exploring an idea [TS]

00:43:48   it's a different well and here we go [TS]

00:43:51   back to the beginning of the podcast is [TS]

00:43:52   a different framework of perception [TS]

00:43:53   because what you're trying to do is [TS]

00:43:54   you're begging [TS]

00:43:55   up against the sides of the idea and [TS]

00:43:57   what about this oh there that happens [TS]

00:43:59   but what about that oh that's how that [TS]

00:44:00   carries out and you're taking the idea [TS]

00:44:02   to its logical conclusion but that's not [TS]

00:44:04   necessarily the same thing as crafting a [TS]

00:44:06   linear narrative that is riveting that [TS]

00:44:09   makes people want to find out what the [TS]

00:44:10   next step is Harold Bloom up by the way [TS]

00:44:12   also failed to show up for the podcast [TS]

00:44:14   tonight so well he forgot his microphone [TS]

00:44:16   just under sail [TS]

00:44:18   I think he also failed Jim Scott were [TS]

00:44:21   you gonna say something [TS]

00:44:23   uh yes I was speaking you know thinking [TS]

00:44:26   about novels as commerce i can imagine [TS]

00:44:29   you know there's a lot of work to make a [TS]

00:44:31   threat level after I've ever written but [TS]

00:44:33   i can't imagine it is [TS]

00:44:34   yeah easy but I didn't do it [TS]

00:44:37   attention as we you know establish takes [TS]

00:44:42   a long time to write so he would have to [TS]

00:44:43   put a lot of effort into it and frankly [TS]

00:44:45   i'm sure it would be a lovely novel but [TS]

00:44:47   I don't think it would sell all that [TS]

00:44:49   well just because it's not i don't you [TS]

00:44:52   get the sense he's almost like a [TS]

00:44:53   musician's musician right exactly what I [TS]

00:44:56   don't think this is not gonna be a harry [TS]

00:44:57   potter right so why don't we go here we [TS]

00:45:00   go again once again you have the [TS]

00:45:01   exploration of ideas versus the ability [TS]

00:45:03   to craft a compelling narrative right [TS]

00:45:05   it's drama that's what i'm going to wear [TS]

00:45:07   section of it fun [TS]

00:45:09   this actually reminds me a bit of the [TS]

00:45:10   assume all of you already seen the Funny [TS]

00:45:12   or Die Harry Met Sally sequel [TS]

00:45:14   yes yes yes so they're actually reminds [TS]

00:45:18   me like the ted chang around to be a [TS]

00:45:20   little that it's like you know he could [TS]

00:45:22   take these incredibly like beautiful sad [TS]

00:45:25   subtle ideas and turn into a novel and [TS]

00:45:27   then if you just have that one idea like [TS]

00:45:28   the Empire's he could make a million [TS]

00:45:30   like all I guess that won't work well it [TS]

00:45:32   so i want to mention my to ted chang [TS]

00:45:36   stories because we don't ask you I i I'm [TS]

00:45:39   just sitting right over here Jason that [TS]

00:45:41   social your favorite what are your [TS]

00:45:44   favorite oh it doesn't matter now you've [TS]

00:45:46   destroyed everything you ruin every [TS]

00:45:48   muscle is not a more adult i'm going to [TS]

00:45:50   go in my room probably pick bad ones [TS]

00:45:51   anyway [TS]

00:45:52   exactly actually what's funny as i am [TS]

00:45:55   going to mention two stories that that [TS]

00:45:58   none of you mentioned I was waiting for [TS]

00:46:01   the inevitable somebody to mention these [TS]

00:46:03   stories and nobody did one of them i [TS]

00:46:04   mentioned earlier which is the merchant [TS]

00:46:06   and the alchemist gate which I really [TS]

00:46:07   like it's [TS]

00:46:09   it's about a guy who goes into a shop in [TS]

00:46:11   Baghdad and a man is there who has this [TS]

00:46:14   arch and the arch will take you 20 years [TS]

00:46:18   into the future and and theoretically it [TS]

00:46:23   will take you 20 years into the past but [TS]

00:46:25   only after it's been operational for 20 [TS]

00:46:27   years [TS]

00:46:27   logically but he came his son runs a [TS]

00:46:31   shop in Cairo that also has an arch and [TS]

00:46:34   that's been in operation for a while so [TS]

00:46:35   you can go forward or backward in time [TS]

00:46:37   and then the main character ends up well [TS]

00:46:40   first there are amusing scenes where he [TS]

00:46:41   sticks his arm through it and waves it [TS]

00:46:43   doesn't come out the other side and all [TS]

00:46:45   of that and they look through and they [TS]

00:46:46   see who's on the other side it's like [TS]

00:46:48   the guy but he's all 20 years older but [TS]

00:46:51   he ends up his wife died 20 years before [TS]

00:46:54   and a horrible accident and so he goes [TS]

00:46:56   to Cairo and goes back through to 20 [TS]

00:46:59   years in the past and then comes back to [TS]

00:47:00   Baghdad and you know it is on one level [TS]

00:47:03   it is just sort of how many different [TS]

00:47:04   explorations can we have the idea of you [TS]

00:47:08   know you can go forward or backward in [TS]

00:47:09   time 20 years but the the way that it's [TS]

00:47:12   done in this almost Arabian Nights sort [TS]

00:47:14   of style and there are these these [TS]

00:47:16   legendary tales that the man who runs [TS]

00:47:18   the shop tells about different [TS]

00:47:19   characters and the whole you know sort [TS]

00:47:21   of horrible tragic things that happen to [TS]

00:47:23   them when they went through into the [TS]

00:47:25   past or the future just you know and i [TS]

00:47:28   really i really like it it's actually [TS]

00:47:29   not like a lot of his other stories and [TS]

00:47:31   that it is this kind of fantastical you [TS]

00:47:35   know a kind of amusing also somewhat [TS]

00:47:38   tragic but also some parts of it are [TS]

00:47:40   kind of funny and anyway I like it a lot [TS]

00:47:43   I think I that stuck with me I I in fact [TS]

00:47:46   i'd look back and realize that that was [TS]

00:47:48   a ted chang story because I hadn't [TS]

00:47:49   realized that but so I love that story I [TS]

00:47:52   don't know if you guys read that but i [TS]

00:47:53   love that story i read i just went today [TS]

00:47:55   for the first time and I I thought it [TS]

00:47:57   was it was a beautifully self-contained [TS]

00:47:59   it's his take on arabian nights and yeah [TS]

00:48:01   i really i really enjoyed that part of [TS]

00:48:03   it with a time portal my only problem is [TS]

00:48:05   why would the main character after he [TS]

00:48:07   talks to the the shopkeeper any of the [TS]

00:48:10   shopkeeper tells these stories where it [TS]

00:48:12   didn't work out the way anyone thought [TS]

00:48:13   it would [TS]

00:48:14   and yet he still goes through and you [TS]

00:48:16   know it's not going to work out the way [TS]

00:48:17   he thinks is going to but then I saw you [TS]

00:48:19   light went on and he had to push the [TS]

00:48:21   button exactly is going to say but [TS]

00:48:22   then this is this theme that touching [TS]

00:48:24   explorers and that you don't really have [TS]

00:48:25   free will and everything is predestined [TS]

00:48:27   so no matter what you do it doesn't [TS]

00:48:28   matter because it's going to happen [TS]

00:48:29   anyway hope is the engine that pushes [TS]

00:48:31   you forward but it has no impact on what [TS]

00:48:34   happens when that everything ends [TS]

00:48:36   tragically assistant his worldview the [TS]

00:48:39   ted chang worldview so the other story [TS]

00:48:41   that I really like is liking what you [TS]

00:48:42   see a documentary Rosalia which is which [TS]

00:48:46   is about the concept that they're there [TS]

00:48:48   is this procedure that can be done where [TS]

00:48:49   they put this little helmet on you and [TS]

00:48:51   it basically it flips a switch in your [TS]

00:48:53   brain and you can no longer you can no [TS]

00:48:56   longer detect whether somebody is [TS]

00:48:58   attractive or unattractive it's shallow [TS]

00:49:02   helped em I suppose if we want to catch [TS]

00:49:05   generally brother's involved along with [TS]

00:49:07   the night at the roxbury sure but i'm [TS]

00:49:10   going to raise the tone of his condition [TS]

00:49:12   i really thank you and now you used to [TS]

00:49:15   give us crazy words that are only in the [TS]

00:49:17   dictionary and now you bring up movies [TS]

00:49:19   like I've suffered brain damage and [TS]

00:49:21   obviously they put on the little helmet [TS]

00:49:22   this is like this is like the worst-case [TS]

00:49:24   scenario when you read that Chang [TS]

00:49:26   stories instead of an alternate your [TS]

00:49:27   brain for the better with expanded [TS]

00:49:29   consciousness and nonlinear time [TS]

00:49:30   difference even to an aficionado of SNL [TS]

00:49:33   movies it's so off so like what like [TS]

00:49:35   what you see and it's on a college [TS]

00:49:37   campus and there's some sort of politics [TS]

00:49:38   about about this that there's just some [TS]

00:49:41   of the students who went to schools I [TS]

00:49:43   think of private schools where where [TS]

00:49:45   this procedure was mandatory and the [TS]

00:49:47   ideas imagine going to high school and [TS]

00:49:49   having nobody be able to tell the pretty [TS]

00:49:51   people from the average looking people [TS]

00:49:54   from the ugly people that they're just [TS]

00:49:55   all people and you have to judge them on [TS]

00:49:57   their personality which is interesting [TS]

00:49:59   you know in and of itself that is taken [TS]

00:50:01   to this other level which is that at [TS]

00:50:03   this college campus they are talking [TS]

00:50:05   about making it mandatory or not and [TS]

00:50:08   some of the kids who are coming from [TS]

00:50:09   these private schools are debating [TS]

00:50:11   whether they should have it turned off [TS]

00:50:14   or not and there's the whole issue of [TS]

00:50:16   this pace of asymmetry right where we're [TS]

00:50:21   like this apparently with one of the [TS]

00:50:22   main characters in it [TS]

00:50:23   she's beautiful her boyfriend was in [TS]

00:50:26   high school is unattractive but she [TS]

00:50:28   loved him and didn't realize he was [TS]

00:50:29   unattractive and she but she doesn't [TS]

00:50:32   she's now sort of thrown in with the [TS]

00:50:33   sharks because there are people there [TS]

00:50:35   who are talking to her not because of [TS]

00:50:37   her personality but because she's [TS]

00:50:38   beautiful and she doesn't even realize [TS]

00:50:40   she's beautiful and I just I thought [TS]

00:50:42   that was a really fascinating [TS]

00:50:43   exploration of that again that core idea [TS]

00:50:46   which is what if there was this [TS]

00:50:48   technology available to make what we [TS]

00:50:51   would think would be like a perfect [TS]

00:50:53   thing which is to eliminate judging [TS]

00:50:55   people by their looks and then take it [TS]

00:50:57   to the extreme of well it would really [TS]

00:50:59   be that simple and they would actually [TS]

00:51:02   be kind of a mess and there are lots of [TS]

00:51:04   ramifications which is something science [TS]

00:51:06   fiction does really well and I i really [TS]

00:51:08   enjoyed that about it was interesting as [TS]

00:51:10   its told in this documentary fashion and [TS]

00:51:12   I was actually thinking that might make [TS]

00:51:14   that might have actually made a good [TS]

00:51:16   novel in the sense that you could have [TS]

00:51:17   really expanded the world [TS]

00:51:19   I suppose it wouldn't have been had the [TS]

00:51:21   impact because it would have probably [TS]

00:51:22   been more like I try to picture a nice [TS]

00:51:24   sort of imagine it being like a Robert J [TS]

00:51:26   Sawyer kind of novel there's another [TS]

00:51:28   kind of you know overly expanded and [TS]

00:51:30   more young adults and I'm not sure [TS]

00:51:32   whether you know it would have worked [TS]

00:51:35   but I could see it because you could [TS]

00:51:37   talk about the you know the kids in high [TS]

00:51:39   school and their relationship and then [TS]

00:51:40   talk about them coming to college and [TS]

00:51:41   and it's not told him that way it's [TS]

00:51:43   holding this kind of quick cut soundbite [TS]

00:51:46   documentary style of these little bits [TS]

00:51:49   of clips later against each other [TS]

00:51:52   the neat part of it too is that I'm one [TS]

00:51:53   movie part is that he's got it's one of [TS]

00:51:55   his more you more interesting narrative [TS]

00:51:57   devices stories that uses but you have [TS]

00:52:00   not just the issue of some of that [TS]

00:52:04   technology to remove people's ability to [TS]

00:52:07   you know see what they see how people [TS]

00:52:09   really look for or against perceived [TS]

00:52:10   beauty right that's the thing is yeah [TS]

00:52:12   its preceding beauty comes with a great [TS]

00:52:14   word what is the word is callie callie's [TS]

00:52:16   what they call it read like Ali agnosia [TS]

00:52:18   which i think is exactly well I think [TS]

00:52:20   it's an actual thing that that there [TS]

00:52:21   they can be you have a stroke or or [TS]

00:52:24   something like that where where it just [TS]

00:52:26   turns off this thing in your brain and [TS]

00:52:27   then you can tell it's like the oliver [TS]

00:52:29   sacks kind of thing but there's an [TS]

00:52:31   actual story just like this that people [TS]

00:52:34   have people have a prospect nausea which [TS]

00:52:36   the inability to recognize faces right [TS]

00:52:39   so you can see features but you can't [TS]

00:52:41   just be all over South the man who [TS]

00:52:42   mistook his wife for a hat and you was [TS]

00:52:44   part of that part of that thing that's [TS]

00:52:46   very interesting once once you know [TS]

00:52:47   about prosopagnosia [TS]

00:52:49   discover that some he thinks that five [TS]

00:52:50   to ten percent of the population in the [TS]

00:52:52   US has some form of it and once you read [TS]

00:52:54   about prospect nosy it's like reading a [TS]

00:52:56   touching story suddenly got metal ask [TS]

00:52:57   the people you know who have it by how [TS]

00:53:00   they behave towards you before you talk [TS]

00:53:01   to them and after you start a [TS]

00:53:03   conversation however that said if that [TS]

00:53:06   said one of the things that's that's [TS]

00:53:08   fascinating stories at the bit [TS]

00:53:10   underlying so we're talking about one [TS]

00:53:12   thing this cali going to turn on and off [TS]

00:53:13   so that you can proceed whether other [TS]

00:53:15   people are beautiful or not or what they [TS]

00:53:17   look like I guess if you've received [TS]

00:53:18   some perception of their attractiveness [TS]

00:53:20   I then at some point store you find out [TS]

00:53:22   that this this consortium that's trying [TS]

00:53:25   to advertise trying to lobby against the [TS]

00:53:28   college and in cali has developed this [TS]

00:53:30   new even more horrible technology that [TS]

00:53:33   allows them to directly influence people [TS]

00:53:35   through like my Croatoan so they [TS]

00:53:37   probably right add at the college that [TS]

00:53:39   leaves everyone voting against turning [TS]

00:53:42   kalyan as a mandatory thing and then [TS]

00:53:44   it's discovered that the the advertising [TS]

00:53:46   firm is just horrible new thing that [TS]

00:53:47   never needs to get total ban against [TS]

00:53:49   because it will allow you know every [TS]

00:53:51   dictator in the world to absolutely rule [TS]

00:53:54   all the people in it [TS]

00:53:55   yeah because it bypasses your rational [TS]

00:53:57   brain goes straight to the stuff that [TS]

00:53:59   you're hardwired to recognize attractive [TS]

00:54:00   or influenza 00 so like the route all [TS]

00:54:03   the the root language that we speak in [TS]

00:54:05   our brains strange yeah strange attach a [TS]

00:54:07   story all that the thing I was gonna say [TS]

00:54:09   by the way is so there is a real there's [TS]

00:54:11   a story of one of our sexes of [TS]

00:54:12   nonfiction bits about a woman who has [TS]

00:54:15   problems with magnolia and chief [TS]

00:54:17   she's a beautiful woman has no idea she [TS]

00:54:19   is now a model i believe and she falls [TS]

00:54:21   in love the guy she was in love with [TS]

00:54:22   this origin is a clown because feature [TS]

00:54:24   so he is this feature so malleable and [TS]

00:54:27   broadly he's apparently a really goofy [TS]

00:54:29   looking guy who cares I'm like is [TS]

00:54:31   awesome but why is that awesome you [TS]

00:54:33   start to examine the reasons for it all [TS]

00:54:34   becomes extremely convoluted perhaps [TS]

00:54:37   it's because I look like a clown i'm [TS]

00:54:38   wearing a red button nose right now as [TS]

00:54:40   we speak [TS]

00:54:41   Crossing your body shoes whenever the [TS]

00:54:43   other that's right maybe we all say you [TS]

00:54:45   know it's all unfair you should judge [TS]

00:54:47   what's on the inside man [TS]

00:54:48   neta and that story it's like well the [TS]

00:54:51   grade but it kind of doesn't you know [TS]

00:54:54   it's not so simple and if you do that [TS]

00:54:57   then there is the flip side which is [TS]

00:54:58   they that that woman gives a speech and [TS]

00:55:00   everybody's like hey [TS]

00:55:02   she's right we should do what she says [TS]

00:55:04   and it turns out that they're they're [TS]

00:55:06   all being influenced the other way so [TS]

00:55:09   but before we wrap up I wanted to give [TS]

00:55:11   everybody a chance if they if there's [TS]

00:55:13   something out there that they that's a [TS]

00:55:15   short story not by ted chang that they [TS]

00:55:18   want to to mention a favorite or a [TS]

00:55:21   favorite author who does short stories [TS]

00:55:22   or potpourri really now it's now's the [TS]

00:55:26   chance [TS]

00:55:26   anybody have anything i'm going to [TS]

00:55:28   recommend David are you sec um it that [TS]

00:55:31   because everybody should read we were [TS]

00:55:33   out of our minds with joy and he does [TS]

00:55:35   have a short story collection on I would [TS]

00:55:37   also recommend reading James Morrow's [TS]

00:55:38   Bible stories for adults but again read [TS]

00:55:40   it when you're not in a bad mood and on [TS]

00:55:44   final guys that is that because it's [TS]

00:55:46   going to put you in a bad mood or [TS]

00:55:47   rebellious oh yeah okay yes um [TS]

00:55:49   there-there was married when you're [TS]

00:55:51   headed toward a bad mood now they're [TS]

00:55:53   fantastic stories I mean he has a [TS]

00:55:55   beautiful story about a couple that [TS]

00:55:56   inadvertently gives birth to a planet [TS]

00:55:58   and it is one of it is one of the [TS]

00:56:01   sweetest stories i have ever read about [TS]

00:56:02   what makes a family and what people do [TS]

00:56:04   for their children and and what it means [TS]

00:56:07   to have to let the child go and you know [TS]

00:56:10   it's I'd like to before I had children [TS]

00:56:12   and now that I have a daughter and I [TS]

00:56:14   reread the story it was a big lump in [TS]

00:56:16   the throat moment so but again there are [TS]

00:56:19   some remarkably better stories in there [TS]

00:56:21   so you kind of have to watch what you're [TS]

00:56:22   doing um and I'm going to also put in a [TS]

00:56:25   plug for an old-school story collection [TS]

00:56:27   that I I like to read whenever I'm [TS]

00:56:29   feeling perversely in the mood for [TS]

00:56:31   pickup which is a william gibson's [TS]

00:56:34   collection burning chrome hmm good stuff [TS]

00:56:37   in there there are there are a lot of [TS]

00:56:38   good stories in there i especially like [TS]

00:56:40   the one about and event against if it [TS]

00:56:44   sounds depressing but it's not really i [TS]

00:56:45   especially like the one about the people [TS]

00:56:47   who have to bring back who have to bring [TS]

00:56:49   back the astronauts who were picked up [TS]

00:56:51   and abducted by aliens on rapid olga and [TS]

00:56:54   her Stoga olga and her seashell but yeah [TS]

00:56:57   I would if you're looking for sci-fi [TS]

00:56:59   horror story collections start with [TS]

00:57:00   those [TS]

00:57:01   alright that's a fascinating story i [TS]

00:57:03   forgot i dread that reached I forget [TS]

00:57:05   that skips in yeah yeah no it'sit's [TS]

00:57:07   there they're very much a product of the [TS]

00:57:10   eighties when you take a look at oh it's [TS]

00:57:12   Soviet technology and and the perception [TS]

00:57:15   of [TS]

00:57:15   of how things are going to shake out and [TS]

00:57:17   of course the Japanese are going to run [TS]

00:57:18   the world but at the same time a lot of [TS]

00:57:20   the ideas that he follows from point A [TS]

00:57:22   to point B i find very timeless and [TS]

00:57:25   interesting to look at [TS]

00:57:26   so then what about you I was gonna [TS]

00:57:30   recommend something any more broadly [TS]

00:57:32   which is the James Tiptree awards the [TS]

00:57:36   it's a website tiptree dot RG and as [TS]

00:57:40   I've probably spoke about incest least [TS]

00:57:41   one of my favorite favorite authors and [TS]

00:57:43   eventually will organize enough of us [TS]

00:57:44   with some agenda to read tipsy and talk [TS]

00:57:48   about her work has her work and the the [TS]

00:57:51   awards are given two stories and novels [TS]

00:57:54   that represents something of her which [TS]

00:57:58   is not just like gender bending but [TS]

00:58:00   things that bring up and twist subvert [TS]

00:58:04   explore issues of of the nature of [TS]

00:58:07   gender and so they're not all in there [TS]

00:58:10   what's great is the ones they pick that [TS]

00:58:11   up i think three anthologies and they [TS]

00:58:14   also give awards have used to have [TS]

00:58:16   winners each year they produced looks [TS]

00:58:18   like three anthologies and some other [TS]

00:58:20   stuff that comes out and that stories [TS]

00:58:23   are just sometimes excerpts from novels [TS]

00:58:24   sometimes stories and their marvelous [TS]

00:58:27   stuff that it's it's not pedagogical [TS]

00:58:29   it's not like in the world where [TS]

00:58:31   everyone has three genders and why it's [TS]

00:58:34   all really subtle interesting things [TS]

00:58:36   there's one that I remember in [TS]

00:58:38   particular been trying to figure out the [TS]

00:58:40   name of it that some of these funny [TS]

00:58:41   things I it's um I believe it's by a [TS]

00:58:44   government next fold [TS]

00:58:47   it's a story called looking through lace [TS]

00:58:48   and when you read this story you think [TS]

00:58:51   that it'sit's again about linguistics [TS]

00:58:53   about linguists going to other planets [TS]

00:58:55   and the roof nest of all is the name and [TS]

00:58:57   it's um what's great about the story is [TS]

00:59:01   this woman lands this planet there's [TS]

00:59:03   this old cranky linguist has been there [TS]

00:59:06   for a long time sort of mastered it but [TS]

00:59:07   like the research university back home [TS]

00:59:09   is like all his work so she goes out [TS]

00:59:11   there you find she finds out he's [TS]

00:59:12   entirely entirely supported the research [TS]

00:59:15   not just by being a man but by entirely [TS]

00:59:19   putting it through the filter of his own [TS]

00:59:20   gender bias and it's a beautiful story [TS]

00:59:23   and you're reading along certain like Oh [TS]

00:59:25   over the whole thing just flipped over [TS]

00:59:28   in my head [TS]

00:59:28   and now it all becomes clear like a [TS]

00:59:31   language becomes clear the culture this [TS]

00:59:33   guy's bigotry and there's a great little [TS]

00:59:35   kicker at the analyst literally else [TS]

00:59:37   kicker is a spoiler and for it so i [TS]

00:59:40   recommend those collections at all all [TS]

00:59:42   available libraries from the last year's [TS]

00:59:44   know that in the Miles Vorkosigan books [TS]

00:59:46   there is a third ginger which is [TS]

00:59:48   actually handled very interestingly the [TS]

00:59:50   the kind of in interim gender character [TS]

00:59:55   so it's out there and what ursula leguin [TS]

00:59:58   left hand of darkness is all about [TS]

00:59:58   left hand of darkness is all about [TS]

01:00:00   a strange kind of gender mixings and [TS]

01:00:03   merging Scott you have some short story [TS]

01:00:07   thoughts for us i don't really read [TS]

01:00:10   short stories all that much i am more of [TS]

01:00:12   a I like to read novels but i do stovl [TS]

01:00:18   matinee I have an attention span [TS]

01:00:21   it's true I like introduction span is [TS]

01:00:25   far too like the the offer to land all [TS]

01:00:27   out for me so don't have to think that's [TS]

01:00:29   the fake right [TS]

01:00:30   can you wanted all spelled out for me [TS]

01:00:33   I'm a single man at length with time on [TS]

01:00:36   my hands [TS]

01:00:37   yeah i will mention a short story that i [TS]

01:00:41   mentioned in a previous podcast that did [TS]

01:00:44   in fact have an effect on me and then it [TS]

01:00:48   turned into a novel which wasn't very [TS]

01:00:49   good [TS]

01:00:50   I i think as when I was a nightfall [TS]

01:00:54   no I went through and as warehouse phase [TS]

01:00:57   where i read i want to read everything [TS]

01:01:00   you wrote that you wrote something like [TS]

01:01:01   forty thousand books but sometimes right [TS]

01:01:05   right with one hand a manuscript while [TS]

01:01:07   typing a manuscript with the other takes [TS]

01:01:09   you there's nothing you could [TS]

01:01:10   here's the thing you can say about being [TS]

01:01:11   a dedicated as laughs reader is i have [TS]

01:01:13   read as much as any man is true so I [TS]

01:01:18   read all the foundation stuff and the [TS]

01:01:21   whatever the robot detective stories and [TS]

01:01:25   nightfall without read both the short [TS]

01:01:27   story which was fantastic and then the [TS]

01:01:29   the novel that he did with opportunity [TS]

01:01:32   silverberg which was less fantastic but [TS]

01:01:37   the basic idea is it's not a planet that [TS]

01:01:38   that is has three sons so it's never [TS]

01:01:42   really night except for one time every [TS]

01:01:44   thousand years or something like that [TS]

01:01:45   and so the the as you might tell by the [TS]

01:01:49   title it is set the night that like the [TS]

01:01:53   right before this night falls and and [TS]

01:01:55   society just freaks up to check it out [TS]

01:01:59   it's the Stars my god the stars [TS]

01:02:02   exactly they're pretty alright here's my [TS]

01:02:05   eye i have a bunch so I'm gonna go [TS]

01:02:08   really quick one is a short story that I [TS]

01:02:10   loved so much when I read it in analog [TS]

01:02:12   magazine like [TS]

01:02:13   twenty years ago that i still have that [TS]

01:02:15   issue of analog magazine called [TS]

01:02:18   hindsight by Eric Iverson but that I [TS]

01:02:23   believe that's actually like harry [TS]

01:02:25   turtledove over or something it's a it's [TS]

01:02:27   a pseudonym but it's a great short story [TS]

01:02:30   yeah in that the the premises that time [TS]

01:02:34   travel has been intended and people have [TS]

01:02:38   come back in time to the fifties to the [TS]

01:02:40   highlight of of science fiction short [TS]

01:02:42   story writing and the end the time [TS]

01:02:45   travelers are all science fiction [TS]

01:02:46   writers so that there's a woman who is [TS]

01:02:51   writing actually you like this [TS]

01:02:54   Glenn she's writing as a man because she [TS]

01:02:57   can't write as a woman and she's riding [TS]

01:03:01   the short stories and nobody's heard of [TS]

01:03:02   her and one science fiction writer of [TS]

01:03:04   the time the and actually two of them [TS]

01:03:07   they track her down and the thing that I [TS]

01:03:10   love about it is actually that there's [TS]

01:03:12   something really pure of a scene of [TS]

01:03:15   somebody from at the time the present [TS]

01:03:17   day trying to explain bits of of history [TS]

01:03:21   and culture from our present-day to [TS]

01:03:24   somebody in the past i love that it's [TS]

01:03:25   that same idea of like how would I [TS]

01:03:26   explain a freeway to george washington [TS]

01:03:28   right [TS]

01:03:29   how would I explain an airplane to [TS]

01:03:31   Abraham Lincoln they don't have to be [TS]

01:03:32   President but I think about the [TS]

01:03:33   president's I don't know what there's a [TS]

01:03:34   great time the dancing bug cartoon in [TS]

01:03:36   which the a very lazy character goes [TS]

01:03:38   back in time not his recent spate of [TS]

01:03:41   those and try and says Thomas Jefferson [TS]

01:03:43   I'm from the future has proved it says [TS]

01:03:44   behold this bottle of carbonated liquid [TS]

01:03:47   that is seal the retains its carbonation [TS]

01:03:49   like I believe us its ok so in hindsight [TS]

01:03:51   that the to the real killer moments are [TS]

01:03:54   he she pops out of a VHS tape this is [TS]

01:03:58   how long ago this was written [TS]

01:04:00   it's about time travel but VHS VHS tape [TS]

01:04:03   of star wars in and they don't know what [TS]

01:04:07   it is but as they used to destroy [TS]

01:04:08   describes what she's doing you realize [TS]

01:04:10   it's a it's a tape player and she [TS]

01:04:12   presses play and Star Wars comes on and [TS]

01:04:15   their first thought is oh my god it's in [TS]

01:04:17   color and every second and the second [TS]

01:04:21   thought is is that Alec Guinness which I [TS]

01:04:24   don't mind [TS]

01:04:25   I love and then and then when they're [TS]

01:04:26   talking and she reveals because they're [TS]

01:04:28   all kind of offended that she's she's [TS]

01:04:30   not actually coming up with clever idea [TS]

01:04:32   she's stealing ideas from her past and [TS]

01:04:34   that's their future and and she says [TS]

01:04:37   well that's not entirely true [TS]

01:04:39   some of them are mind yeah they're like [TS]

01:04:41   yeah you know that Ted offensive story [TS]

01:04:44   and the Watergate story we knew those [TS]

01:04:46   could be true actually [TS]

01:04:49   anyway so I love that story it's just [TS]

01:04:51   this little short story but I love it's [TS]

01:04:53   just pushes all the right buttons for me [TS]

01:04:54   about like time travel and showing [TS]

01:04:56   historical figures things from our time [TS]

01:04:58   and how cool that would be i want to [TS]

01:05:00   mention uh which already did the [TS]

01:05:03   gardener does noise does well whatever [TS]

01:05:05   it is your best science fiction [TS]

01:05:06   anthology is highly recommended comes [TS]

01:05:08   out of every July lots of great stuff [TS]

01:05:11   and that's where I've read a lot of a [TS]

01:05:13   short story writers we talked about [TS]

01:05:14   hearing it in that anthology it's really [TS]

01:05:18   well done hee-hee-hee preface it with [TS]

01:05:20   this kind of ridiculous and boring of [TS]

01:05:23   summation of the year where he like [TS]

01:05:24   lists everything that was ever released [TS]

01:05:26   in any medium in sci-fi which is just [TS]

01:05:29   skip it but I i really love the stories [TS]

01:05:31   and then last because I cannot believe [TS]

01:05:33   this person's name we have talked for an [TS]

01:05:35   hour about sci-fi short stories and they [TS]

01:05:37   haven't mentioned this person's name [TS]

01:05:39   Harlan Ellison for God's sake [TS]

01:05:42   whoo-hoo Harlan is a new channels AFC me [TS]

01:05:49   ask you this incredibly nice because [TS]

01:05:51   Oeneus I don't buy my one of my junior [TS]

01:05:54   high [TS]

01:05:55   english teachers who was a sci-fi not in [TS]

01:05:57   a renaissance fair person she told us [TS]

01:06:00   the story about in this isn't the 80,000 [TS]

01:06:02   your eye or late seventies release in [TS]

01:06:04   that she really is anyway she said in [TS]

01:06:06   the seventies like Harlan Ellison was [TS]

01:06:07   divided to eugene oregon where I grew up [TS]

01:06:09   and he was staying with his family and [TS]

01:06:11   he was so profoundly foul but the [TS]

01:06:14   parents couldn't have met their dinner [TS]

01:06:15   tables she had him over to dinner [TS]

01:06:17   because he couldn't sit at a table with [TS]

01:06:20   chairs they say life is nasty brutish [TS]

01:06:22   insured and so is Harlan Ellison but [TS]

01:06:25   that all said that guy that guy can [TS]

01:06:28   write and that guy can make sure it's [TS]

01:06:29   the right and some of the most amazing [TS]

01:06:31   and affecting stories it's not only the [TS]

01:06:34   famous older stuff like repent Harlequin [TS]

01:06:37   said the tick-tock man [TS]

01:06:38   or just to drift off the aisles of [TS]

01:06:40   language yeah you know the deathbed [TS]

01:06:42   stories but i really love the shattered [TS]

01:06:46   a collection including saturday and [TS]

01:06:48   paladin lost our which were made into [TS]

01:06:50   new twilight zone episodes that were [TS]

01:06:52   actually pretty good but uh his book I [TS]

01:06:57   think it's angry candy which is one of [TS]

01:06:59   his recent one of it one of his more [TS]

01:07:01   sort of latter day collections some some [TS]

01:07:06   amazing stuff including a story called [TS]

01:07:08   the function of dream sleep that will [TS]

01:07:10   just rip your heart out and another [TS]

01:07:13   story that when both of my kids pass [TS]

01:07:16   through the age of five [TS]

01:07:17   my wife and I spent an entire year [TS]

01:07:18   talking about which is a story called [TS]

01:07:20   Jeff ds5 which is about the kids that [TS]

01:07:22   never ages [TS]

01:07:24   Jeff ds5 he's always five seriously you [TS]

01:07:28   know if you haven't read the short [TS]

01:07:29   stories of Harlan Ellison for pete's [TS]

01:07:32   sake just you know find find one find [TS]

01:07:34   one of the collections and and buy it [TS]

01:07:36   and I'm telling you you won't be [TS]

01:07:38   disappointed because not only is he an [TS]

01:07:39   amazing stylist but some of the ideas [TS]

01:07:42   and some of those surgeries are so crazy [TS]

01:07:45   and it's all kind of magic realism it's [TS]

01:07:48   it you know II but it's it's amazing [TS]

01:07:50   stuff so he is he's not a best short [TS]

01:07:53   story writer i have ever read now you [TS]

01:07:56   know also that this is not a [TS]

01:07:57   little-known fact this is a well-known [TS]

01:07:58   fact I will state in case of our [TS]

01:08:00   listeners underwear is that Harlan [TS]

01:08:02   Ellison does not revive so all the [TS]

01:08:04   stories were written extensively in a [TS]

01:08:06   single draught and never revised yeah [TS]

01:08:08   I'm not sure I so he could believe that [TS]

01:08:10   but claimed he claims a lot of things [TS]

01:08:12   that he wants but but but he has his [TS]

01:08:14   famous only have written for having [TS]

01:08:16   written he used to do this thing where [TS]

01:08:18   he would write short stories in windows [TS]

01:08:19   of bookstores [TS]

01:08:20   yeah and that he would write them and [TS]

01:08:22   then that would be it and I do believe [TS]

01:08:24   that but those aren't his best stories [TS]

01:08:26   which is why i don't believe that he [TS]

01:08:27   doesn't revise them but and he's he's [TS]

01:08:29   getting up there and and he's he wrote [TS]

01:08:31   something last year that basically said [TS]

01:08:32   I'm gonna die soon and I'm not quite [TS]

01:08:34   sure whether that's true or whether he's [TS]

01:08:36   just you know what got a complex about [TS]

01:08:38   it but you know he he's got enough stuff [TS]

01:08:42   in print now I think all of his stuff is [TS]

01:08:43   back in print in fact now I bought it [TS]

01:08:45   all when it was all in used bookstores [TS]

01:08:47   and of course now it's all back in print [TS]

01:08:49   but lot of great collections angry candy [TS]

01:08:52   shattered a desperate stories lots of [TS]

01:08:55   good stuff out there and if you want to [TS]

01:08:56   see more of Harlan Ellison the man can [TS]

01:08:59   check out Harlan Ellison dreams with [TS]

01:09:01   sharp teeth which is a documentary [TS]

01:09:03   oh my god him available on the character [TS]

01:09:06   is a character there's also there's also [TS]

01:09:08   a website run by other people i think [TS]

01:09:10   this was designed not just designed in [TS]

01:09:13   1996 what I think designed in a previous [TS]

01:09:15   epic like before the wedding yesterday [TS]

01:09:17   designed it thinking the web might work [TS]

01:09:19   this way [TS]

01:09:20   yes it's bizarre alice in wonderland you [TS]

01:09:22   mean yes it's very straight and she sold [TS]

01:09:25   his desk and get oh yeah it's it's a [TS]

01:09:27   it's he said he's a issues i actually i [TS]

01:09:30   actually bought the the city on the edge [TS]

01:09:32   of forever the star trek episode that he [TS]

01:09:34   wrote i bought the book it's the the his [TS]

01:09:36   original screenplay which is which you [TS]

01:09:38   can see why they changed it just like [TS]

01:09:40   there's a drug dealers on the enterprise [TS]

01:09:42   that is why huh [TS]

01:09:44   but but he's got a whole story about [TS]

01:09:47   getting screwed by the man it in having [TS]

01:09:51   his story changed and the funny thing [TS]

01:09:54   about it is that in the process of of [TS]

01:09:56   writing this special edition with all [TS]

01:09:58   these these comments he discovered the [TS]

01:10:00   Dorothy Fontana who was one of the [TS]

01:10:02   script of just four star trek and a good [TS]

01:10:04   friend of Harlan's for all this time [TS]

01:10:05   she's the one who rewrote his episode go [TS]

01:10:09   ahead and he he's almost all most [TS]

01:10:11   fortified not possible to actually be [TS]

01:10:12   mortified if you're Harlan else but [TS]

01:10:14   almost mortified that the person that [TS]

01:10:16   he's been saying I don't know who would [TS]

01:10:17   hack destroyed my episode is this person [TS]

01:10:19   who was his friend for the you know for [TS]

01:10:21   the past 20 years and she basically says [TS]

01:10:23   well of course I didn't tell you it was [TS]

01:10:25   me you know but so anyway it is possible [TS]

01:10:29   that by booking his name is possible he [TS]

01:10:31   will listen you were looking for this [TS]

01:10:32   podcast and call us up angrily which [TS]

01:10:34   will be able to us know again [TS]

01:10:36   well can I wanted to actually mention [TS]

01:10:38   another at a different editor who's [TS]

01:10:40   collections of short stories are worth [TS]

01:10:42   reading who I'd forgotten about until [TS]

01:10:43   you guys are talking a few minutes ago [TS]

01:10:45   ok song with the past mike resnick be [TS]

01:10:48   alright with mike resnick back in the [TS]

01:10:52   eighties and nineties pulled together a [TS]

01:10:55   bunch of different collections called [TS]

01:10:56   alternate outlaws alternate heroes or [TS]

01:10:59   alternate tyrants my favorite that [TS]

01:11:01   collections actually alternate Kennedy's [TS]

01:11:03   and as you can imagine all of these [TS]

01:11:05   collections are centered around [TS]

01:11:07   historical syfy we're basically someone [TS]

01:11:09   says what if X happens instead of Y and [TS]

01:11:12   then takes its logical conclusion such [TS]

01:11:14   as what if mother Theresa became a [TS]

01:11:16   gun-wielding bank bank robber on the [TS]

01:11:20   awesome the alternate Kennedy's is my [TS]

01:11:23   favorite collection just because you [TS]

01:11:24   know it [TS]

01:11:25   most of the stories take place in a [TS]

01:11:28   fairly recent American epic so if you're [TS]

01:11:30   moderately familiar with American [TS]

01:11:31   history you can enjoy the riffing such [TS]

01:11:34   as when the Kennedys become a beatles [TS]

01:11:36   s-band oh yeah and and you figure out [TS]

01:11:40   which one is which one is the John which [TS]

01:11:41   one is the gorge and so on and so forth [TS]

01:11:43   but residents also funny a second he [TS]

01:11:46   does write his own stories he alternates [TS]

01:11:48   between really funny things and his [TS]

01:11:50   fictitious Karen yoga series which is [TS]

01:11:53   based very heavily on the key you [TS]

01:11:54   culture of Africa but as an editor he's [TS]

01:11:58   quite gifted because he has a very very [TS]

01:12:00   deft hand between heavy big idea [TS]

01:12:02   typewriters and writers were really just [TS]

01:12:04   going to walk a long way for a punchline [TS]

01:12:06   and if you like any alternate history at [TS]

01:12:10   all [TS]

01:12:11   he's a good bed if you want to read [TS]

01:12:13   science fiction that again vacillates [TS]

01:12:16   between small ideas and big ideas you [TS]

01:12:18   know he's a good bet if you want to read [TS]

01:12:20   alternate history about Teddy Roosevelt [TS]

01:12:21   he writes a lot of that to you know I [TS]

01:12:24   right and i think mike resnick doesn't [TS]

01:12:26   get mentioned enough and he's good at [TS]

01:12:28   what he does [TS]

01:12:29   so you have to throw out one more one [TS]

01:12:31   more Damon night because in opposition [TS]

01:12:34   Harlan Ellison tonight was a lovely man [TS]

01:12:36   and great everybody and terrific [TS]

01:12:38   short-story writer and he's the one [TS]

01:12:40   behind to serve man which often and [TS]

01:12:45   twilight zone episode and became [TS]

01:12:47   simpsons parodies and has been run so [TS]

01:12:49   many times you there are so many [TS]

01:12:50   versions of to serve man but he is [TS]

01:12:53   responsible for that mean that story [TS]

01:12:55   greater story writer with he also tried [TS]

01:12:57   to advance you know get cutting-edge [TS]

01:12:59   like what the seventies into the [TS]

01:13:01   eighties about what science fiction was [TS]

01:13:03   by editing tons of anthologies of really [TS]

01:13:06   sometimes very difficult to read stuff [TS]

01:13:08   as well and just to bug Jason I wanted [TS]

01:13:10   to our school with [TS]

01:13:11   I i went to high school with his service [TS]

01:13:14   of course because I know everybody or [TS]

01:13:16   something that everybody could sub but [TS]

01:13:17   you didn't night Kate wilhelmy his wife [TS]

01:13:20   and Verve Angela Eugene Oregon with [TS]

01:13:22   power and i'll offer new venture going [TS]

01:13:24   to podcast and we will that's one of my [TS]

01:13:27   favorite books is the is the marooned in [TS]

01:13:29   real-time across peace war that little [TS]

01:13:31   bobble oh yeah I love that I love that [TS]

01:13:34   stuff [TS]

01:13:35   no the wolf creatures in the end and on [TS]

01:13:37   and i'll toss out one last one which is [TS]

01:13:40   new legends which is a great bear [TS]

01:13:42   actually was the co-editor of and and [TS]

01:13:45   most notably because it's got a story by [TS]

01:13:47   Greg bear called Wang's carpets in it [TS]

01:13:48   which is one of the most mind-blowing [TS]

01:13:50   stories i have ever read and the scary [TS]

01:13:53   thing about it's basically like a world [TS]

01:13:54   where this is matt of like algae that [TS]

01:13:56   floats on the surface of the above a [TS]

01:13:59   notion and it turns out that encoded in [TS]

01:14:03   the fluctuations of the vibrations of [TS]

01:14:05   the algae is an entire world [TS]

01:14:08   it's like holographic and and it's funny [TS]

01:14:11   because this is actually physicists [TS]

01:14:12   think this might actually be the way our [TS]

01:14:14   universe works is that we're all kind of [TS]

01:14:16   wiggling things on a hologram [TS]

01:14:19   two-dimensional thingy I I I are not a [TS]

01:14:23   physicist but i did not descend from LG [TS]

01:14:27   but it's far it's no no you are encoded [TS]

01:14:29   your encoded in a holographic virtual [TS]

01:14:32   reality in cold outside alg it's okay [TS]

01:14:36   it's just one of the stories were like [TS]

01:14:38   whoa where is this and a new legends is [TS]

01:14:41   all about that it's like crazy sort of [TS]

01:14:43   based on the cutting edge of of science [TS]

01:14:45   and you have 10 years ago now but anyway [TS]

01:14:47   so there's a lot read that we have a lot [TS]

01:14:49   here and there's a lot more to read and [TS]

01:14:51   i hope if we've done nothing else we've [TS]

01:14:52   we've encouraged everybody out there to [TS]

01:14:54   to read some short stories whether they [TS]

01:14:57   are stories by ted chang or others not [TS]

01:15:01   see what i did there I see I say reading [TS]

01:15:03   a novel them and/or don't and listen to [TS]

01:15:06   Scott that that's your other way that [TS]

01:15:07   you could go that way [TS]

01:15:09   I'm sure our next book club edition will [TS]

01:15:11   will be based on a novel although we [TS]

01:15:13   don't actually have anything to announce [TS]

01:15:15   about what it will be so check the [TS]

01:15:18   Twitter go follow the incomparable on [TS]

01:15:20   Twitter and will tell you they're all [TS]

01:15:21   right so thank you this was great and I [TS]

01:15:24   really appreciate all [TS]

01:15:25   the contributions I I you know short [TS]

01:15:27   stories are not they don't get a lot of [TS]

01:15:29   love but I felt a lot of love on this [TS]

01:15:32   podcast which is which is good so I'd [TS]

01:15:34   like to thank my guests [TS]

01:15:35   Scott McNulty thank you for staying up [TS]

01:15:37   with us I'll keep it brief but I thought [TS]

01:15:41   you liked novels many levels of how many [TS]

01:15:45   ways sitting them go and Fleischmann [TS]

01:15:48   thank you for bringing us down with your [TS]

01:15:50   you know terrible Farrelly Brothers and [TS]

01:15:54   and Saturday Night Live references you [TS]

01:15:57   lowbrow guy you gotta mix it up can [TS]

01:16:00   always be the Ivy League and and Lisa [TS]

01:16:02   Schmeisser thank you for actually [TS]

01:16:04   letting some class and dignity of the [TS]

01:16:06   proceedings for once I like how it's for [TS]

01:16:08   once I suppose the rest of times on the [TS]

01:16:10   rest of the Bulgarian no no no it's just [TS]

01:16:13   not gonna have to the ER usually the [TS]

01:16:15   book club and you actually class up the [TS]

01:16:17   joint [TS]

01:16:18   well thank you lie i hope i can join us [TS]

01:16:20   again soon for different so until next [TS]

01:16:22   time this is jason snow you're hosting [TS]

01:16:25   comfortable thanks for listing i hope [TS]

01:16:28   you read some of the things we tell you [TS]

01:16:30   we'll see you next time [TS]

01:16:36   [Music] [TS]

01:16:49   although if you're if you're um if your [TS]

01:16:52   car is crushed by Thor's hammer [TS]

01:16:54   it's not covered because that's an act [TS]

01:16:55   of god [TS]